Visualising Suspicion: Art, Community and Counter-Terrorism

Bringing academia, art and community together to explore themes of racism, hate and suspicion, in an attempt to create a though provoking exhibition that engages directly with Birmingham communities.

Visualising Suspicion large


Research background

In this project, we aim to bring together two different forms of knowledge; academic research produced by BCU academics and artistic work produced by Faisal Hussain, to create a complimentary and thought-provoking exhibition that engages directly with Birmingham communities. The project seeks to promote how we, as a community, can interpret and challenge suspicion and hate.

Research aims

The project has 3 key aims:

  1. To engage and involve local communities in discussions of governmental responses to terrorism and their experiences of suspicion and hate.
  2. Showcase local work and champion local artists and academics to challenge perceptions of suspicion, hate and counter-terrorism.
  3. To utilise creative forms of dissemination to extend debate outside of the university and into community environments.

The main approaches to facilitate this research are participant surveys.

Projected outcomes

Our intention is to open dialogue and possibilities of working with local communities in relation to issues of racism, fear, hate or suspicion

 In addition, our strategy of dissemination will include:

  1. Dissemination to the local community. This will be agreed in consultation with the local community, as to what is the best format to share our findings. We expect the project will raise awareness in the community and will also capture a sense of the feeling in the community toward suspicion and fear. Our findings will be aimed at local groups, for example the Muslim Community Centre, however we also intend to share the findings with youth groups, Art projects, local government, local police forces and schools. Our best approach will be finalised in a round-table discussion with vested parties after the exhibition
  2. Publishing chapter in Bristol Policy Press publication on Birmingham 2029

Reporting on the event through local media, i.e. through established links with  BBC Birmingham and Channel 4 News; through social media and through BCU website and our current project website.