There is an allegory in the Quran of a lamp in a glass niche that is as bright as the shining star, burning from the oils of an olive tree, seen from the West and the East. The light from this lamp embraces the entire existence, the heavens and the earth, illuminating every corner of the cosmos; it is light upon light. This is famously known as the Light Verse of the Quran, it is one of the most sublime descriptions of Divine light, existence, and its’ varying degrees of intensity. My art practice in recent years explores the mystical nature of light and its effect on our perception. I draw from ancient philosophical knowledge of illumination, an imaginative experience in interactive digital light installations. My art practice is purposefully curated to introduce ajab, a state of wonder for the seer who enters the installation space.
Narjis Mirza is a PhD candidate at Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand. She is also the recipient of the Vice Chancellors Doctoral Scholarship. Her research examines the potential of light and its metaphysical resonance with digital technologies in building the notion of reality; she takes inspiration from Muslim philosophers, most notably Mulla Sadra Shirazi and Shihab Ud Deen Suhrawardi. Narjis plans to expand the dialogue on being and reality through concept films and light installations.
Narjis completed her masters’ degree in media and design at Bilkent University Ankara. Prior to beginning her Masters program, she launched an independent public art studio called Artjamz.pk that worked in collaboration with an art studio in Washington DC. Narjis also received distinction for her bachelor’s in fine arts at the National College of Arts in Pakistan. She began her career as a painter and has exhibited internationally. Her short film The Line was in the official selection of the 5th Art by Chance ultra-short film festival. Narjis is an artist, an entrepreneur and an academic; she lives and works in Auckland and Sydney.
2017-Present: PhD Art and Design at Auckland University of Technology.
2014-2016: Master of Fine Arts in Media and Design Bilkent University, Ankara , Turkey
2008-2012 : Bachelors of Fine Arts. (awarded distinction) National College of Arts, Lahore Pakistan.
Residency and Workshops:
“Bilkent Media Future Initiative” by Egbert Van Wyngaarden, September 2015 in Ankara.
Vasl International Artist Residency on Performance, Moving Image and Sound, February 2012 in Karachi.
Representative of Pakistan at the 18th International Visual Arts Festival For Youth, September 2011, in Gurgan Iran.
Kuch Khass Artist Talk in Islamabad Pakistan
MFA Thesis Exhibition at Cermodern, Ankara
MFA Thesis Exhibition at FADA Exhibition Hall Bilkent University
Bilkent Typography exhibition, Ankara
Bilkent Animation exhibition, Ankara
Bilkent Graduate Studio II Exhibition, Ankara
Screening and official selection of film in 5th ART BY CHANCE Ultra Short Film Festival Istanbul
Bilkent Graduate Studio I Exhibition, Ankara
“FRESH” Group show under 30 at Amin Gulgee Gallery Karachi
“Pastiche” Group show at National Art Gallery Islamabad
“Pastiche” Group show at Zahoor ul Akhlaq Gallery Lahore
Radio Show interview as young emerging artist on FM 107 Karachi
“Open Day Call” Exhibition at port grand in Karachi
Degree Show at National College of Arts
Group show at Fakhruddin Hall , Gurgan Iran.
Group show at Tehzeeb Gallery F7 Islamabad.
Group show of photography titled “ Takhleeq ” at Pakistan National Council of Arts