What is Artistic Jihad?
Artistic Jihad is a Muslim student art competition and exhibition organised by FOSIS. It is designed to promote Muslim student artists and build a network supporting students seeking a career or further study in the arts. We aim to showcase the work of up-and-coming artists and to highlight the increasing contribution of Muslims to society.
Why call it Artistic Jihad?
Jihad, literally meaning ‘struggle’, is a widely misunderstood and derided concept. Its usage has almost become profane and inflammatory and has shown little signs of abating. However just as the English flag needs to be reclaimed from the far-right fascists of the EDL, the Muslim community needs to reassert its influence on Islamic terminology.
The struggles of aspiring Muslim artists are many, from having to defend their faith, embrace new identities, promote positive narratives, overcome a community prejudice towards arts, or to simply try and get onto the career ladder. The cry of the Muslim artist’s struggle could not go unanswered. And so, we founded Artistic Jihad.
Artistic Jihad seeks to:
• Showcase the work by Muslim emerging student artists to the Muslim, student and the wider community
• Find and support the next generation of Muslim artists
• Encourage young Muslims to study and seek a career in the arts
• Dispel misconceptions and promote the study and appreciation of art in the Muslim community
• Outreach to the wider community to impart positive narratives through art
Artistic Jihad is a nationwide talent search for the best Muslim student artists. Artists will submit their work over the course of several weeks to be judged by several eminent Muslim artists: Peter Sanders, Ruh Al-Alam, Abid hussain and Reeda El-Saie.
The chosen finalists will be awarded with a place to have their piece displayed in a special exhibition in Central London, and have their artwork tour the country as part of the Artistic Jihad Roadshow.
The finalists from the competition, as chosen by our panel of judges, will form the line up for the national Exhibition. Taking place on the 18th March 2012.
To help promote the finalists careers and the work of young Muslim artists we have the support of Reeda El-Saei and Abid Hussain, we will also have media coverage to increase the exposure and recognition for our aspiring artists.
Following on from the Exhibition, we will take the artwork on a nationwide tour to cities including Birmingham, Nottingham and Glasgow. Through this we endeavour to increase the public’s engagement with our young Muslim artists and further increase their exposure and reputations. We will arrange for local interactions through presentations at educational institutions, places of worship and city councils to facilitate our efforts to promote art in the Muslim communities.
Who are FOSIS?
The Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS) is a national umbrella organisation established in 1963. It is aimed at supporting Islamic Societies and representing the interests of over 100,000 Muslim students studying at universities and colleges throughout the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. Our Islamic Societies in colleges and universities play a vital role in promoting Islam and influencing the next generation; they are at the forefront of social interaction between Muslims and the wider society.
FOSIS has played and continues to fulfil an important role within the Muslim community. We have a rich history of civic and political engagement in British and Irish society and our alumni have left a profound legacy on the Muslim world. We hope through the Artistic Jihad project that we can continue to carry out that legacy and further the cause of the arts in the Muslim community.