Art is my passion

Israa Issa Mahameed

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Late in 2018 I completed a community art project with support from Cultiva Express in collaboration with Agder Energi. My work- ‘Bu-nad’ was inspired by a combination of Norwegian and Palestinian traditional embroidery. This work was painted on three sides of a small building- around eleven meters wide and three meters high. I wanted this project to express something of my new identity as a Palestinian Norwegian. The older generations in both Palestine and Norway have seen the beauty in traditional handwork with ‘the same eyes’ and the same visual sensitivity. This common heritage is what inspired me to create the work- with a combination of both traditions’ patterns.

Video for the artwork Bu-nad:


I believe that in Lesvos there is an exciting opportunity to create more of these types of art projects. Meeting people from different nations, backgrounds and ethnic groups, definitely inspires me to find common themes and expressions of beauty within these groups. For example, their own traditional creative expressions in handwork or embroidery patterns and motifs. I envision creating a beautiful story and identity wall with the information I collect in my time there.

Art is my passion, which I have cultivated ever since I was a little child; drawing, painting and writing were my way to express my feelings, visions, and opinions. I have participated in many exhibitions in Palestine, UK and Norway. I have written two novels, and dozens of short stories. The novel “Possible Life” was published twice, both in Egypt and Palestine. The other novel I wrote is currently being published by ‘Al-Ahlea’ publishing house in Jordan. Now I am writing a new novel about being a migrant and the issues around identity and social acceptance.

Here are some pictures of some artworks I have created in deferent periods in my life:


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