Nissa Riyas is a contemporary artist originally from India but currently based in Dubai. She has been painting for the last 16 years and although she started painting early in life, it was her travels around the world that started her soul-searching and quest for true inspiration.
Nissa has visited a multitude of museums and seen the works of several old masters to find herself in the world of art. After each journey she came back with a new style. Having experimented prodigiously and developed different patterns and forms in her painting, her viewers are still able to identify the artist’s particular form and style. One way of making a distinction is by capturing the emotions of her subjects and translating that successfully to her canvas. These subjects are not the ones sitting in front of and for her, they are everyday and everywhere subjects and it is their emotions that enter her work.
A viewer can clearly identify the emotion that attracts them first when they see a Nissa Riyas painting and this forces them to make a correlation. Beyond that, even her emotions and moods often enter into the portrayals. As an artist this intrusion gives her more freedom.
Nissa’s imagination plays a significant part in all of her works. She cannot identify or attach herself to a subject. Even with portraits, she mostly takes the silhouette of the subject with emotions coming from elsewhere. She strongly believes in the Buddhist principle of detachment and keeps floating between ideas, styles, and mediums which ultimately makes her free from attaching to anyone or anything particular.
Sometimes Nissa paints around the complex patterns of nature and at other times she is obsessed with the most modern and contemporary forms of art. The artist maintains a fluid movement between landscapes, portraits, still life and so on but her work is always one that provides a connection to the viewer.
Nissa believes she is influenced by humans and their emotions that constantly surround her. These have a deep influence and a subject can stop her from painting for several days due to this deeper influence. When the artist realizes that which has affected her, she carries on and a masterwork is born.
Using oils in almost every portrait, Nissa finds it the best medium to reflect emotions, while at the same time she fervently pursues the use of acrylics in her abstract works. This conflict is ongoing but it never stops her creations. At the end of every day, Nissa gives life to her paintings by traveling through these conflicts, ending always with the viewer in mind rather than herself.