Mahtab Hussain’s work confronts issues around race and representation, respect and cultural difference. Go see this important exhibition before it closes on 1 July.
Hussain’s whole body of work as an artist is about the “dynamic relationship between identity, heritage and displacement.” As a British-born Muslim growing up in Birmingham he wrestled with his own identity, feeling that he didn’t fit into one particular cultural group. ‘You Get Me?’ is the latest in a series of Hussain’s works that puts the spotlight on what it’s like to be young, British and Asian.
Featured image: Young boy in pink and grey beanie © Mahtab Hussain – ‘You Get Me.’
Visit his show at Autograph ABP and you’ll be welcomed by 25 portraits. Many of the portraits are direct, with the young men looking straight to camera. They are bold, tender, honest and sometimes fragile. They paint a picture of a whole section of Britain that is all to often underrepresented in popular culture, on our TV screens and beyond. Hussain spent 9 years gathering together this photo series.
The title captures perfectly the feelings of the young men looking back at you in this exhibition who are looking for understanding from their neighbours and us as nation in an increasingly hostile world. We need more work and people like Mahtab Hussein to turn this story around.
‘You Get Me?’ is a free exhibition on show at Autograph ABP until 1 July.
If you don’t get the chance to visit the show, check out these fantastic articles online about this photo series.
Explore more of Hussain’s work on his website