Maria Nissan is an environmental Assyrian artist born in the U.S. with international experience in Europe, the Middle East, and more recently in South-East Asia. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Art Education and a Master’s degree in Studio Arts from Florence, Italy. Maria takes a lot of her inspiration from her cultural and family Assyrian roots.
Since her studies in Italy, Maria’s passion for the last 10 years has been transforming trash into art as a medium to challenge what people buy, how they consume, and dispose of it. Either through drawings, immersive installations, or exhibitions, her creations are tackling issues about plastic pollution, waste consumption, and other environmental and societal concerns.
In emerging countries, Maria continues to focus on plastic pollution in urban and natural environments through a non-profit organization she co-founded, MicroPlasticsJO. Through artistic workshops and trainings, she and her partner work together with local communities in Jordan, Thailand, and Indonesia in order to reduce the excessive use of single-use plastics. Maria and her partner hope to be able to expand and do the same in the Iraqi Assyrian villages Maria’s family comes from.