My Heart is the Portal

Salma Arastu

December 2 and 3, 11am - 5pm daily

As an internationally exhibited woman artist I bring a unique global perspective due to the fact that I was born into the Sindhi and Hindu traditions in Rajasthan, India, and later embraced Islam and moved to USA in 1986. As a woman, artist, and mother, I work to create harmony by expressing the universality of humanity through paintings, sculpture, calligraphy and poetry.
My works are lyrical, spiritual, layered and flowing, revealing the stories of unity in diversity, hope and connection, celebration of earth and women. The common thread running through my work is that I am seeking oneness among humanity, soil and soul.
As a visual artist I have had 40 plus solo shows nationally and internationally and have won several prestigious awards including the East Bay Community’s Fund for Artists in 2012 and 2014 and 2020. The City of Berkeley’s Individual Artist Grant Award in 2014, 2015, and 2016. I have public art pieces on display in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania and San Diego, California and I have also written and published five books on my art and poetry including my recent with ecological consciousness from Quranic verses “Our Earth: Embracing All Communities.”

Artist Statement
My works are lyrical, spiritual, figurative, and calligraphic. My story begins with line and through this continuous line I am trying to connect humanity, soil, and soul.
The lines I create represent the spiritual energy that emanates from a soul. Arabic Calligraphy, miniatures, and the folk art continue to influence my work today. I have tried to bring together Eastern spirituality and Western techniques of painting learned over the years. Through the contrasting elements in my work, I yearn and search for unity balance.
My method is a physical and meditative process that fills each canvas with moving lines and multi-layered textures. For me creating art means getting physically involved with the piece: scratching, sanding, layering materials like paper, rope, modeling paste, paper-mache or copper plate, and embroidering with pen and ink. I apply thin layers of acrylic color in between adding textures and this working process brings out subliminal images.

Location and Contact Information

Artwork Price Range
$100- $5000
Studio or Exhibition Space
Sawtooth Building, 2547 Eighth Street, Studio #37, Berkeley, CA, USA
Accessibility Information
This studio is accessible
Languages Spoken
English, Urdu and Hindi
Social Info