Young boy, white boxing gloves

Mahtab Hussain (1981 - )

C-type photograph

  • About the work
    Country: UK
    City: London
    Place: Government Art Collection

    This is one of three photographic works in the Collection from Mahtab Hussain’s series ‘You Get Me?’ that explores the varied experiences and expressions of manhood in young British-Asian and Muslim working class communities. Taken over nine years, the series explores personal styles and attitudes, and how these reflect and react with a sense of identity through fashion and body language. 

    The series formed the basis for a similarly-titled exhibition at Autograph Gallery, London, in 2017. It was long-listed for the Deutsche Börse Prize 2017/18 and 2018/19, and was published by MACK books with the support of Arts Council England, winning the Light Work Photobook Award for 2017. The anonymised words of one of Hussain’s interviewees in the book resonate with the resolute gaze of the subject of this photograph, Young boy, white boxing gloves: ‘In order to survive you’ve got to train, you’ve got to protect your friends and protect your family; if you don’t, people will step over you.’

  • About the artist
    British artist Mahtab Hussain graduated in History of Art at Goldsmiths, University of London (2002); Museum and Gallery Management, City University London (2006); and Photography at Nottingham Trent University (2013). His practice explores the relationship between identity, heritage and displacement. His themes develop through long-term research articulating a visual language that challenges the prevailing concepts of multiculturalism. He has exhibited in the UK and the United States since 2010, with work included in group exhibitions at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery (2010); Aperture Gallery, New York (2014); and Somerset House, London (2019). He has had solo exhibitions at mac Birmingham (2012); New Art Exchange, Nottingham and Strange Cargo, Folkestone (2015); Ikon Gallery, Birmingham (2016); New Art Gallery, Walsall (2018, 2019).
  • Explore
    boxing, boy
  • Details
    Young boy, white boxing gloves
    Series Title
    ‘You Get Me?’ 2008–17
    One of an edition of 5
    C-type photograph
    height: 72.5 cm; width: 106.5 cm; depth: 5.5 cm
    Purchased from the artist March 2021, through the Art XUK project 2020-21
    The artist; from whom purchased by UK Government Art Collection, 31 March 2021
    GAC number