Eleanor Nadimi is a London-based artist and textile designer with an Iranian heritage that informs the architectural nature of her creative output. She draws inspiration from mid-century design and Persian architecture and geometry, and examines the effect of shape and colour on our mental state through her multi-media practice. Whilst maintaining a minimal aesthetic, Eleanor injects her paintings and designs with carefully curated and composed colours and textures.
Complementing her career as a fine artist is Eleanor’s sustainable soft furnishing and homeware brand ‘One Nine Eight Five, which supports UK manufacturing with a no-waste, ethically-sourced philosophy.
She describes her Palm Springs series as ‘an ongoing investigative exploration into how the modular nature of mid-century homes, in particular desert modernism architecture established in Palm Springs in the 1920s, brought the outside in allowing you to become immersed in the landscape.”
Culturalee caught up with Eleanor as she opened her exhibition at Burgh House in Hampstead, London, which showcased her paintings, tufted furniture and textile art.
Culturalee: How would you define culture?
Eleanor Nadimi: For me culture is a sacred notion that accumulates over time, creating traditions, behaviours, values and beliefs that are passed down from one generation to the next.
What was the starting point for your career as an artist?
I’ve been creating for many years designing textiles amongst other things. My painting career as an artist began in July 2022.
What has been your most moving cultural experience to date?
When I think about what my most profound cultural experience is, it is actually something very intuitive that has been quietly influencing me for as long as I can remember. I am British but I also have Iranian roots and it is this combination of having dual ancestry that has had the biggest effect on me, how I see the world and my creative career.
What’s your greatest personal achievement as an artist?
My greatest personal achievement as an artist was actually the moment I decided to start painting. That might sound a bit silly but as a very shy introvert, it was a huge moment for me to share my work. I’ve never experienced this feeling before when creating other things, making art feels so much more personal.
What’s your favourite artist/ book/ exhibition/ play/ film/ musician?
I always find it hard to answer with just one person but my top favourite musicians are Arcade fire, Jon Hopkins, Slum Village and Peter Gregson
Who are the cultural icons and artists that have inspired you most?
I love the work of American artist James Turrell, he completely immerses you into his work. I adore colour and find it fascinating how colour, colour combinations and composition affect our mood and his work, at the scale he produces it, reinforces this on a level I’ve never experienced before. I’m also very inspired by Josef Albers, Milton Avery, Mark Rothko and Saloua Raouda Choucair.
Any tips for young people wanting to break into the art world?
For a long time I was a crippled by the notion of having to share my work. Often though, the thought of doing something is much scarier than doing it. So I would say to anyone wanting to step into the art world, go for it. Dive in head first and share your creations with the world, staying true to who you are.
Can you describe the process of making your art and how you developed it?
My creative process has been evolving for many years now. My process for making art is very similar to anything else I create. It always starts with a theme or brief, followed by a collection of imagery that relates to the mood. From here I play with colour and composition, both in my sketchbook and digital. This helps me to create a unified body of work. Its very important for me to keep an element of focus when creating otherwise I tend to go off piste, down a rabbit hole of ideas that, for a collection, can be a little tricky to digest.
What project(s) are you currently working on?
I’ve started to explore merging my two worlds of textiles and painting. I love texture, colour and pattern and these naturally occur in both mediums. I’m playing with how I can combine these two together. I showcased some of these new pieces at my most recent exhibition at Burgh House in Hampstead, London which included paintings, tufted furniture and textile art. I have so much more to explore here and am very excited about the possibilities.