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HomeBiographyNaziha Saleem Biography: Early Life, Work, Family, Art work, & Achievement

Naziha Saleem Biography: Early Life, Work, Family, Art work, & Achievement

Naziha Saleem is a famous artist and author from Iraq and is highly known for her artwork. She has been a popular name during her time and even today. She is recognized for the powerful craftsman aura that she has shown during contemporary craftsmanship. Her artwork has a deep meaning behind it. She has portrayed Iraqi women’s struggles and problems during their survival. Every poem and every painting has a reason that defines distinctive tones. Some of the vital information about Naziha Saleem are:

Full name Naziha Saleem
Nickname  Naziha 
Date of birth December 15 1927
Age  It was her 93rd birthday on December 15th 2023
Birthplace  Istanbul, Turkey
Nationality  Iraqi
Profession  Author, artist and painter
Educational Qualification Graduated from the Institute of Arts in Baghdad
Marital status NA
Religion  Muslim 
Parents  Hajji Mohammed Salim 
Death  February 15, 2008
Net worth  NA
Popular for Famous Iraqi artist and Google Doodle are owned under her name

Early life

Naziha Saleem was a great artist of her time, and even today, she is considered an essential part of the artistic culture. However, during those times, not all female artists were respected. The same happened with Naziha Saleem. However, her story has taken a significant turn due to her brother, Jawad Saleem. Naziha Saleem was born in a regular household in Istanbul in 1927. She was born in Istanbul, but they originally belonged to Mosul. Her father was an officer in Turkey’s Ottoman army. Later, once he decided to leave this life, he returned to Baghdad. At that time, Naziha was a pretty small child.

Naziha Saleem has adopted this artistic nature from her family as her father Hajji Mohammed Saleem was an artist. Her Turkish family was one of the famous artists. Even her mother was a great embroidery artist. If we conclude, the whole family was an artist, which can also be the prime reason for Naziha Saleem’s liking of art. The first artist of Iraq who created the European style – Abdul Qadir Al Rassam, was a close relative of Naziha. Moreover, her big brother was also a great artist skilled as a political cartoonist. Jawad also made one of the most loved sculptures of the Iraqi Republic, which has gained much popularity and love. 

When Naziha Saleem was studying in Paris, she was also awarded a scholarship for her excellent work in art and literature. She was the first woman to gain a scholarship as an Iraqi woman. She first graduated from Baghdad University in 1940 and cleared her fine arts course in 1960 in Paris. Later, she worked as a teacher till 1980.

She has started displaying her work through Ira’s art community, also recognized as Al–Ruwwad. This group is famous for its aesthetic Iraqi touch in every European-inspired painting. This group was a favourite back then and still has extraordinary popularity among the people of Iraq. She was considered to be the gem of artistic culture. Naziha Saleem suffered from a heart stroke, which resulted in her body being paralyzed. She has been living under the influence of paralysis for five straight years. She died at 81 and was considered a significant part of the artistic culture and art. People still recognize her as a great epitome of art, inspiring millions to become like her. 

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 Naziha Saleem was a great Iraqi artist, and her paintings and works define contemporary and modern Iraqi art. She made a painting in 1977 named Sartec, which remains an excellent work for the development and growth of art in Iraq. Naziha Saleem belongs to a middle-class family, and she wants to represent the struggle faced by every woman in Iraq. In her painting, she has depicted the women of Iraq, female workers, goddesses of state, and her life. Throughout her life, she has talked about women and their struggles. It even demonstrates how women and their status changed gradually. She also talks about respecting women and making them much more accessible.


One of the most famous artworks of Naziha Saleem is One Night Dream, which was portrayed in 1978. In this painting, she talks about a Martyr’s life and her life. Her artwork has always been one of the most critical pieces of information people sometimes overlook. She was an artist who loved to create beautiful creations with her brush. However, that is why her artworks are considered to be this famous. Her artwork has played a massive role in the artistic environment, and people still think of her as one of the gems who made people’s lives more beautiful by swaying her paintbrush. 

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Achievements and a glimpse of Naziha Saleem’s life

Some of the successes and glimpses into Naziha Saleem’s life are:

  1. Naziha Saleem was born into an Iraqi family in 1927. Her passion for artwork has taken a pace due to the artistic environment of her family, as almost every person is engaged in some or other field of art. After completing her studies at Baghdad University, she pursued fine arts in Paris. She even gained a scholarship as the first Iraqi woman.
  2. Saleem’s career was uplifted when she showcased her artwork at Barjeel Art Foundations, where many female artists participated in showing their work.
  3. She has great talent in art as she started working at an early age and has been practising from an early age. 
  4. She has excellent hand work in Murral and fresco, which was the main reason for her immense popularity in Paris.
  5. Her book “ Iraq: Contemporary Art has increased the pace of artwork in Iraq. People started getting fascinated with her work and the valuable resources she provides in her book. 

Naziha Saleem Is a great artist of her time who still has a great hold on the artistic world. She is famous for her work and has gained massive popularity from it. She belonged to an artistic family in Turkey and was born in 1927. She has acquired all the knowledge of art from her family members only as everyone is engaged in some creative work in her family. The prime idea behind her every art is the changing role of women in their families and society. During her lifespan, she has faced various health issues, but still, she has an unforgettable place in the history of artwork.  

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