Search giant Google today paid a tribute by Doodle artwork in an ode to Salim’s painting style and a celebration of her long standing contributions to the art world. On this day in 2020, the painter-professor, described as “one of the most influential artists in Iraq’s contemporary art scene”, was spotlighted by the Barjeel Art Foundation in their collection of female artists, Google said.
“Her work often depicts rural Iraqi women and peasant life through bold brush strokes and vivid colors,” it said. “Today’s Doodle artwork is an ode to Salim’s painting style and a celebration of her long standing contributions to the art world!”
Salim was born into a family of Iraqi artists in Istanbul, Turkey in 1927. Her father was a painter and her mother was an embroidery artist. She had three brothers all of whom worked in the arts. Jawad Salim, one of the brothers, is considered one of Iraq’s most influential sculptors.
Salim enrolled at the Baghdad Fine Arts Institute where she studied painting and graduated with distinction. Because of her hard work and passion for art she was one of the first women awarded a scholarship to continue her education in Paris at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts. While in Paris, Salim specialized in fresco and mural painting. After graduation, she spent several more years abroad, immersing herself in art and culture.
Salim eventually returned to Baghdad to work at the Fine Arts Institute where she would teach until retirement. She was active in Iraq’s arts community and one of the founding members of Al-Ruwwad, a community of artists that study abroad and incorporate European art techniques into the Iraqi aesthetic. Later in her career, Salim authored Iraq: Contemporary Art, an important resource for the early development of Iraq’s modern art movement.
She authored “Iraq: Contemporary Art” which focuses on the early development of Iraq’s modern art movement. Her artwork hangs at the Sharjah Art Museum and the Modern Art Iraqi Archive. There you can see the magic she created from dripping brushes and brimmed canvases.