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Award winning artist puts Degree Show in the frame


As part of its 50th Annual Degree Show, the University of Wolverhampton’s School of Art is hosting a photographic exhibition by award winning British artist, Mahtab Hussain.

For ‘The Quiet Town Called Tipton’ exhibition, Mahtab collaborated with Muslim residents in Tipton to make a series of photographic portraits of people after the impact of the Tipton Bomb on 12th July 2013 which exploded outside the Kanzul Iman Masjid mosque.

The portraits are accompanied by text taken from interviews with different generations of Muslim residents living in the town. Hussain explores the important relationship between identity, heritage and displacement. His themes develop through long-term research articulating a visual language that challenges the prevailing concepts of multiculturalism.

The exhibition is taking place from Friday 24th May until Saturday 29th June 2019 in the Wolverhampton School of Art George Wallis Building, room MK045.  There will also be a drinks reception at 5.00 pm followed by a talk and discussion with Emma Chetcuti (Director of Multistory) and Anand Chhabra (Director of Black Country Visual Arts), chaired by Dr Euripides Altintzoglou (Course Leader of Photography, University of Wolverhampton). Tickets are free but limited. Book tickets here.

The exhibition is part of the Blast festival which has been produced by and for local people to present stories about everyday life across Sandwell.

Dr Euripides Altintzoglou, Course Leader in Photography at the Wolverhampton School of Art, said: "We are excited to participate in the Blast Festival by hosting an exhibition and talk by Mahtab Hussain that will launch the Wolverhampton School of Art’s 50th Degree Show.

“Hussain’s ‘The Quiet Town Called Tipton’ takes an honest approach in showcasing the harsh realities of cultural coexistence in regional peripheries. Hussain not only documents these challenges but through his intimate, yet respectful approach, he effectively provides his subjects with the means to share their exemplary positive attitude towards a set of social issues that we all invariably face."

Hussain received his BA in History of Art at Goldsmith College specialising in Fine Art Photography; his MA in Museum and Gallery Management, City University, London; awarded an Arts Humanities Research Council (AHRC), he completed a MA in Photography at Nottingham Trent University.

Hussain has been recipient of numerous awards and commissions including, Ikon Gallery, New Art Exchange, Arts Council England, Arts Humanities Research Council; he has also been winner of the Curators Choice Award, Culture Cloud at New Art Exchange and of Format 13 Portfolio Review Award for most significant review. Hussain was selected as the 2015 Light Work + Autograph ABP Artist-in-Residence, and chosen from 500 international artists to be ‘discovery artist’ under the prestigious Discoveries Award in 2016 at Houston FotoFest.

Hussain has published four artist books his You Get Me? series is published by MACK books with the support of Arts Council England winning the Light Work Photobook Award for 2017. Going Back to Where I Came From is published by Ikon Gallery, supported by Arts Council England and The British Council. His previous publications, The Quiet Town of Tipton was published by Dewi Lewis and commissioned by Multistory and The Commonality of Stranger published by New Art Exchange.

Hussain’s has been featured on BBC Radio 4, BBC 4, BBC World News and published in articles from The Guardian, The Economist, The Financial Times, The Independent, Vanity Fair, New York Times, Metro, Buzzfeed, Dazed and Confused, Elephant Magazine and Aperture. Recently Hussain was featured on the prestigious BBC 4 documentary ‘What Do Artists Do All Day?’

BLAST! is funded through Arts Council of England's Ambition for Excellence Programme and is supported by Sandwell Council. Multistory is a community arts charity based in West Bromwich in the borough of Sandwell that documents life in Sandwell and the Black Country as part of an ongoing body of photographic work and digital archive. Multistory commissions acclaimed photographers and writers to work with local people to tell their stories of everyday life.

The University of Wolverhampton Degree Show runs from Monday 10th June until Wednesday 19th June 2019 at the Wolverhampton School of Art.

For press enquiries about the Blast Festival contact



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