Although not much is known about Nicola Forcella, we do know that he was born before 1868 in Castellaneta, Italy. His date of death is unknown. His paintings depicted scenes of everyday life that he encountered on his travels throughout Egypt and the Middle East.
It is also known that he taught at the School of Applied Arts Khedivial, Egypt, where he received the Imperial Order of Medjidié. He had a younger brother, Paolo (1868 -?), who studied painting in Naples and accompanied him on his travels in Egypt.