Artwork Deep Dives

Artwork Deep Dive: Naziha Selim 'The Warmth of Tea and a Mother's Embrace'

Nadine Nour el Din
8 September 2022

In this untitled work from 1996, Naziha Selim (1927-2008) paints a vibrant scene that features four Iraqi women in an intimate gathering. Seated around a table, they are veiled, dressed in bright colourful clothes, and each draped in a dark abaya (a loose-fitting full-length robe), which suggests that they may not be in a private space. The protagonist of this painting is a reclining figure nursing her baby, her breast exposed. Her veil shields her from the view of the women who sit behind her, huddled closely.