About Farah Ishaq

Farah Ishaq
b.1980, London, England

Farah Ishaq is an artist and printmaker with a background in music publishing and journalism. Her multidisciplinary work explores the nuances of daily life through observation, wordplay and is an attempt to capture a feeling of home, both physically and emotionally. Her interests lie in investigating beneath the surface of what is seen and heard, in the media, popular culture and politics especially through the stories of individuals connecting with people and places.

Her work has been shown prolifically within Walthamstow, where she lives and works as well as in the neighboring boroughs of Tower Hamlets, Hackney and Islington. She also takes part in many community-focused art projects, curating and facilitating workshops for all ages and abilities. Last year these have included the Open Senses festival, the Traditions show at Mile End Art Pavilion and story creating through shadow puppet making as part of E17 Art Trail in collaboration with Walthamstow Migrants Action Group and Stand Up to Racism. Coming up in 2018 is a printmaking apprenticeship as part of the Bank Job - an initiative to highlight debt and use art to raise money for local charities. 

Her first public installation, A Mural for St James is currently on show under the railway bridge at St James Street Station. Depicting a dynamic view of the Walthamstow Marshes - as seen by a lifelong resident of the area – the motifs within are very much inspired by William Morris. The 3m x 3m paper prototype for the mural was created in February on a month long residency at Trinity Buoy Wharf – and won the Batsford Prize 2017 runner up award for Fine and Applied Art. The finished aluminium panel installation, 2 sections of 120cm x 240cm won Best Community Art Scheme at the national ACoRP Community Rail Awards 2017. Two new public commissions are about to unveiled in Waltham Forest and she is currently seeking new opportunities to exhibit new work.


2016-18 MA Fine Art, University of East London
2015-16 Selection of printmaking, ceramics and portfolio building City & Guild’s and NCFE courses (all Distinction passes)
1999-2002 BA (Hons) History, University of Surrey


2017 Waltham Forest Culture Star Award, one of 20, awarded from public nomination for work within the Borough
2017 ACoRP Community Rail Awards 2017. Winner. Best Art Scheme (Renewable and Smaller) in UK for Mural for St James.
2017 Salon Des Refuses, Voted number 9 in Top 12 Artworks by public vote for Seven Wonders
2017 Batsford Prize, Runner Up. Applied/Fine Art category for Mural for St James
2017 Royal Academy Summer Exhibition. Selected-not hung, Seven Wonders
2016 Student scholarship award, to study for a Fine Art Masters degree at University of East London, London
2016 ‘I can & I will’ Highest achieving student award in Creative Industries at Waltham Forest College, London
2016 Festival of Learning - National certificate of achievement through commitment to learning, after nomination

Recent Exhibitions


2018      Looking Out, Carisbrooke Road/ Walthamstow High Street, permanent wall art. Installed January 2018
2017-18 London Overground 10th birthday commission, 8 linocut plaques on aluminium at 8 train stations in Waltham Forest. Installed November 2017
2017-18 Mural for St James, St James Street Station. London Overground/ E17 Art Trail/ London Borough Waltham Forest. Installed June 2017
2016      Love & Light, Advent(us) community project, 2-channel outdoor public film projection, St Mary’s Church, Walthamstow. Shown on December 4


2018 Salon Des Refuses, Happenstance Gallery, Candid Arts Trust, Islington, London
2018 In A Country Far, Far, Away, Fairytales Museum, Bad Oeynhausen, Germany
2018 100 years/ 100 voices, outdoor sculptural installation, Eastbury Manor, National Trust, Barking
2018 In A Country Far, Far, Away, Art Pavillion, Mile End, London
2018 MA Fine Art Interim Show, Low Hanging Fruit, Lightwell installation space, UEL, Docklands
2017 Summer Exhibition, Walthamstow Village Window Gallery, London
2017 Summary, one month artist in residence show, Trinity Buoy Wharf
2017 Salon Des Refuses, Happenstance Gallery, Candid Arts Trust, Islington, London
2017 E17 Art Trail: Shadowplay workshops x 6, Salvation Army, Walthamstow, London
2017 E17 Art Trail: Wonder, The Mill, Walthamstow, London
2017 Open Senses Festival, Babel in Bloom, St Augustine's Tower, Hackney, London
2017 MA Interim show, AVA Gallery, University of East London
2017 #51%RememberHer, Elements Gallery off-site project, Tower Gallery, London
2017 Element, MA Fine Art Residency Show, Trinity Buoy Wharf, London
2017 Traditions, Art Pavillion, Mile End, London
2017 Ink, Press, Go, The Mill, Walthamstow, London
2016 Palimpsest, Bad Oeynhausen, Germany
2016 100 x Madonna, Kings Cross Crypt, London
2016 E17 Summer Exhibition, Refugees week, St Barnabas Church, London
2016 Down The Roman Road, Generations, Bethnal Green, London
2015 E17 Art Trail, launch of letterpress book Animals of the Stow, St Barnabas Church, London