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Vaishali Prazmari Bio | CV

Practising for Mars

British artist Vaishali Prazmari works on a contemporary visual interpretation of the 1001 Nights. Her multidisciplinary work incorporates elements from various cultures including the Indo-Persian miniatures and Chinese painting of her multiple heritages. Her work has been acquired in collections globally and she has exhibited nationally and internationally for nearly 20 years. Having been immersed in both ancient painting traditions and contemporary art Vaishali is also working towards a practice-led research doctorate at the Slade, an epic and generative project that is an innovative visual interpretation of the 1001 Arabian Nights, its motifs, frame narrative, numerous tales and meanings. Born in London, she grew up on an island in Hong Kong and currently lives and works in London. 


Vaishali holds degrees from both the Slade School of Fine Art (BA Hons) and the Prince’s School of Traditional Arts and holds an MA (Distinction) in Medieval and Renaissance Studies (UCL) specializing in floating islands. She studied Persian and Indian manuscript painting under various masters and Chinese painting under a master in Hong Kong. She has been bringing traditional painting to life for a wider audience as an educator for 10 years. Vaishali has been painting ever since she could get her chubby hands on a brush. 

Vaishali Prazmari’s work falls in cycles and encompasses a diverse range of processes inspired by the frame tale and motifs of the 1001 Arabian Nights, its environs and related book arts of the area broadly known as the Silk Road. Painting forms a major part of her practice and includes the Indo-Persian manuscript painting and Chinese painting of her heritages, the teaching and transmission of these unique art forms and oil painting. Several of the world’s major religions are represented in her family. Her unusual mixed heritage affords her rare freedoms and a unique syncretic approach to art making. In other work cycles Vaishali makes and employs brushes, digital works, apps, toy theatres, talismanic shirts, carpet pages, tapestry weaving, Chinese and Celtic knotting, lacquer, books, 16mm film, neon, fountains, milk, certain obsolete technologies and the learning of languages as part of her practice. 

Me flying with K3.jpg


Born London (1986), lived in Hong Kong, lives and works in London

2019- Practice-led PhD, UCL: The Slade School of Fine Art, London
2012-2014: MA Medieval and Renaissance Studies, UCL, London
2010-2012: MA Visual Islamic and Traditional Arts, Prince’s School of Traditional Arts, London
2006-2007: L’Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux Arts (ENSBA), Paris
2004-2008: BA Fine Art, UCL: The Slade School of Fine Art, London
1995-2012: Traditional Chinese, Persian and Indian painting tutors

Storytellers – Connecting through art: the Power of Stories, The Beaney Gallery, Canterbury, UK, curated by artist Joel Ely


Sound of Sun, Design Festa Gallery, Tokyo, Japan, curated by Nur Gökbulut

Artist and curator of
CARPET PAGES V: CODE, online show and archive at
Kalila wa Dimna: Ancient Tales for Troubled Times, P21 Gallery, London
I-solation Project Series: RECONTACT, Ankara tour, curated by Özge Gökbulut
Artist and curator of CARPET PAGES IV: FLYING CARPET, global collaborative painting project and archive at
Love Thy Neighbour, Manchester Triennale postcard project, Manchester curated by Alnoor Mitha
I-solation Project Series: RECONTACT, Ankara, touring to Istanbul, curated by Özge Gökbulut
Elements, online show and archive at curated by Sara Choudhrey
Artist and curator of CARPET PAGES III: PIXELS, online show and archive at
Artist and curator of CARPET PAGES II: ROOTS, Art Pavilion Mile End, London
Artist and curator of CARPET PAGES I, inaugural show in cycle, Willesden Gallery, London
Contemporary Arts through Living Traditions, Prince’s School Gallery, Shoreditch, London
ISLAND, Willesden Gallery, London
Launched 1,001 Nights epic project
Summer Salon, Lubomirov-Angus Hughes, Hackney, London
No Monkey Business, Q Park Chinatown, London
Salad, L’Escargot, London
Music for Chameleons, salon at 4 Sanford Lane, London
Work in collaboration with Sama Mara and Lee Westwood, A Hidden Order, Kashya Hillenbrand, London
Illumination: The Light of Tradition, Linlithgow Burgh Halls, Linlithgow, Scotland
Icon Anicon, Lady Chapel, Wells Cathedral
Salon at 10 Lushington Road, London
Salon at St Paul’s Shadwell curated by David Lillington, London
Phase II artschool/uk and its Observers, screening of 16mm film Endgame, Whitechapel Gallery, London
Participant in artschool/uk, an initiative bringing international artists, writers, curators, critics and gallerists together with an emphasis on flexible structures such as seminars and workshops with Rainer Ganahl and Caroline Achaintre and a bus ride with Hans Ulrich Obrist, Cell Project Space, London
Blood Orange: Young Painters from Britannia, Art Daegu Biennale, Daegu, Korea
The Alchemists, Edel Assanti, London
Open Studios, Hackney Wicked festival, London
Used/Redeemed, 10 Gardnor Mansions, London
Beyond Borders, Holster Projects, London
Enter 08, Watermans Building, London
Work in Gissings building, Finsbury square, London
The Order of Things, Rivington Gallery, London
Untitled, L’Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts, Paris
Framed, Woburn Research Space, Slade School of Fine Art, London
Day of Damaged Goods, Whitechapel Gallery, London
What a Way to Make a Living, Platform Gallery at Palmers Green, London


2024: UseFool residency: Smoke and Mirrors: Staged Smoke, Invisible Inks and Magic, European Research Council funded with University of Bologna, working on disappearing inks, smokecraft and magic trick boxes in collaboration with Patrik Prazmari, centred on the knowledge and manipulation of nature between usefulness and deception in the Arabo-Islamic tradition (9th–15th century)

2022: Pollock’s Toy Museum Toy Theatre Residency, working on paper theatres for 1001 Nights
2019: Artist Residency in Motherhood, initiative by artist Lenka Clayton
2013-2016: Artist-in-residence, PSTA

2019: Member of MICA: The Medieval in Contemporary Art research group (Slade, SAS) and The Pigment Farm, part of the Material Research Project research group (Slade)


2021: UCL Grand Challenge Award to develop artistic app to learn 1000 Chinese characters
2020: LAHP award to develop 1001 paintings app
2019: Full PhD funding from Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) by LAHP (London Arts and Humanities Partnership)
2011: PSTA Validation Bursary
2008: Slade Duveen travel residency award


2024: Colour & Poetry: A Symposium VI, UCL Slade School of Fine Art (Catalogue and Magic Inks talk)

2023: Colour & Poetry: A Symposium V, UCL Slade School of Fine Art (Catalogue and Toy Theatre talk)
2022: Spineless Wonders, Slade/Institute of Historical Research symposium; VIRTUAL UCLDH: Art and Digital Technology, UCL Digital Humanities/Institute of Advanced Studies conference; Colour & Poetry: A Symposium IV catalogue and webinar, UCL Slade School of Fine Art (Court of Gayumars talk)
2019: Beyond Borders, Slade/Institute of Historical Research symposium
2010: Publication in catalogue, Phase II, artschool/uk; film still from Endgame
2007: Work published in Cluster arts magazine

2008-2014: Theses, essays and papers at


University of the Arts London (UAL); University of Bologna; King’s Foundation School of Traditional Arts; Slade School of Fine Art (UCL); West Dean College (Edward James Foundation)

Work in public collections including Manchester Library

Work in private collections in UK, Korea, Turkey, Israel, Hong Kong
Work archived in the Inter Worlds Archive at UCL: The Slade School of Fine Art curated by Jasmir Creed

Downloadable CV:

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