Ahmad Fuad Osman’s research is brought into art by playfully incorporating contemporary culture and harnessing it with different religious and philosophical experiences. Since the 2000s, he has drawn on daily experiences to analyse how exchange of meaning occurs between individuals and communities brought into contact by globalisation. In the aftermath of the 11 September 2001 attacks in the USA, his works have referenced the image of political Islam, at times with grotesque or humorous effect. This is a theme that became increasingly prominent in 2004 when the artist was held for ‘special screening’ at New York’s Newark Liberty
International Airport, an ordeal that stretched his journey by 14 hours.
From surveying forms of hospitality to rendering faces and experimenting with people come to believe in something as ‘truth’, the key impulse for Ahmad Fuad Osman has been to share the best practices of art as a form of resistance to prejudice. To speak up through art. The artist states, “After all, the only way to understand the past is from the present. If I controlled institutions would that mean I can exercise a monopoly on truth?”
In offering his take on the well-rehearsed position of ‘speaking truth to power’, the artist’s method shifts from urgency and expediency to deep reflection. Artworks in this section, present his ongoing efforts at assembling and re-presenting material histories that speak of the frictions as we attempt to make sense of a post-factual world.