Maliheh Zafarnezhad


Maliheh Zafarnezhad is an Iranian artist, born in 1981.


  • 2012 – 2013     M.A. Degree in History of Art and Architecture from the University of Limerick, Ireland
  • 1999 – 2003     B.Sc. in Geology from Ferdowsi University of Mashad, Iran

Maliheh is an Iranian-Irish multi-media artist. As an Iranian born artist now living in the diaspora, inspirations in her artworks usually emerge out of a multi-national identity, mixed culture, immigration experiences and childhood memories from Iran. Maliheh has spent most of her life in her born country in which she was forced to navigate a web of restrictions as a woman. Hence, most of Maliheh’s artworks are dominated by portraits of women filled by thought-provoking messages about love, feelings, loyalty, obligation and social issues.

Maliheh uses acrylic gel transfer and collage as her main medium. The collage pieces decontextualize images by merging photos from her personal antiquated family photos alongside archival photos of historical illustrations. These works could be seen as romantic attempts to delicately touch and provoke finest human emotions and probably to outline the paradoxes and complexity of identity.

In a very recent project, Maliheh has added another dimension to her 2D works to approach a new representation of an old photo via bringing out an out-of-plane dimension Maliheh’s artistic and professional profile has been recognised internationally, being invited to holding art exhibitions, workshops, and speeches, contributing to art magazines worldwide such as Iran, Ireland, Germany, USA and UAE across different fine art disciplines. One of her artwork has been recently acquired by Durham University’s Oriental Museum to be a part of their permanent collection. Maliheh Zafarnezhad lives in Milton Keynes, UK and is residence of Arts Central.

Selected Events
Solo Exhibitions:
  • 2020     Manipulated Memories, Online exhibition as a part of Journeys Festival 2020
  • 2018     Milton Keynes Central library, Milton Keynes, England.
  • 2009     “Nature & Portrait Painting” – Iran.
Group Exhibitions:
  • 2006     “Nature Painting” – Mashhad, Iran.
  • 2007     “Nature Painting (In the Memory of Master Termeh-Chi)” – Mashhad, Iran.
  • 2010     “Portrait/CEAD Student Exhibition” – Dublin, Ireland.
  • 2012     “Painting/Hive Artist Studios” – Waterford, Ireland.
  • 2012     “Painting/Art Expo Exhibition” – Tehran, Iran.
  • 2013     “Mixed Media / Intercultural Winter Arts Exhibition” – CFCP, Dublin, Ireland.
  • 2013     “Installation (4th Annual of Iranian Contemporary Art)” – Tehran, Iran.
  • 2014     “Galway Fringe Festival” – Galway, Ireland.
  • 2014     “Hive Emerging Artists” – Waterford, Ireland.
  • 2015     “This Forever We Raised Some Hell” – Occupy Space Gallery, Limerick, Ireland.
  • 2016     “Transformation (An Exhibition on Contemporary Arts and Textiles)” – Cornerstone Gallery, Milton Keynes, England.
  • 2016     Central Gallery, Milton Keynes, England.
  • 2016     “6th Annual of Iranian Contemporary Art” – Niavaran Cultural Centre, Tehran, Iran.
  • 2017     “MK Calling 2017” – MK Gallery, Milton Keynes, England.
  • 2017     “Paintings and Drawings” – Art Central Gallery, Milton Keynes, England.
  • 2018     “With My Roots” – Asia House, London, England.
  • 2018     KHP Ateliers, Düsseldorf, Germany.
  • 2019     “The Female Gaze” – Theatre Deli London, England.
  • 2019     Creative Incubator Programme (Web Residency) with Lungs Project
  • 2019     Training Montage, Pineapple Black Gallery, Middlesborough, England
  • 2020     Shape Shift Exhibition, Through This lens Gallery, Durham, North Carolina USA
  • 2020     Woolwhich contemporary print fair, Royal Arsenal, London, England
  • 2014     “Sourcing the Historical Lineage of the Seventeenth Century paintings at Chihil Sutun in Iran: A Gendered Analysis)” – Limerick Postgraduate Research Conference Poster Presentation.


Awards and Publications:
  • 2020     East-West Art and the Should of Expatriate Women
  • 2019     The Hand Magazine, Issue 28
  • 2019     Full Blede, Issue eight: The Interpenetrate
  • 2019     Unootha Magazine, Resolutions Issue 04
  • 2018     Poly Voices, Third issue of Lung Project magazine
  • 2017     Finalist as Top Five Artists (out of 200) for Future Iran, The Behnam Bakhtiar Award by Foundation Behnam Bakhtiar, France (
  • 2018     Artwork published in With My Roots 2018 catalogue, Capital Art London, London, UK
  • 2018     Artwork published in Iran Avant Garde catalogue, KHP Gallery, Dusseldorf, Germany
  • 2014     Artwork published in book: “The 6th Annual of Persbook Contemporary Arts”, Nazar Publisher, Tehran, Iran
  • 2014     Selected artist for the Rose of Tralee Portrait Event, Limerick, Ireland, Dec
  • 2012     Artwork published in book: “The Social Network Art Competition (SNAK): Top 150 Artists”, Art People Gallery Publisher, San Francisco, USA


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