Khushna Sulaman-Butt

Khushna Sulaman-Butt (b. 1995, Blackburn) is an artist based in London. Sulaman-Butt’s painting practice consists of monumental figurative works, mostly depicting realistic portraits based on original photographs. Strongly influenced by modern society and in particular Guy Debord’s “The Society of the Spectacle”, Khushna questions and explores societal expectations, aesthetics of the female body and the subversive exchange of power latent in gender, with subjects rooted in her British-Pakistani background and compositions riffing on European portraiture. By translating the sitter's essence from classical poses, the artist sees her work as a negotiation between people from diverse backgrounds and the Western canon. Sulaman-Butt engages with the signs and visual rhetoric of academic portraiture combined with ethnic and gender diversity within the sitters, bridging the gap between art history and contemporary discourses.

Khushna Sulaman-Butt (b. 1995, Blackburn) completed a BFA at Oxford University (2016) and an MFA at the Slade School of Fine Art (2021).

Her work has been featured in exhibitions including Art Antwerp, Newchild, Antwerp (2023); Art Brussels, Newchild, Brussels (2023); Art Antwerp, Newchild, Antwerp (2022); ‘New Romantics’, The Artist Room in collaboration with Phillips, Lee Eugean Gallery, Seoul (2022); ‘Summer Lovin’, Stems Gallery, Paris (2022); ‘Portrait Artist of the Year: The Exhibition’, Compton Verney Museum, Warwickshire (2022); Lubaina Himid and Khushna Sulaman-Butt, Lindon & Co Gallery, London (2022); ‘Tomorrow 2021’, White Cube, London (2021); Art Dubai, Dubai (2021); Kristin Hjellegerde Gallery, London (2021); Saatchi Gallery, London (2020); Safehouse 2, London (2019); ASC Gallery (2019); Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh (2018); Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens, Sunderland (2018); National Portrait Gallery, London (2017); Exeter City Art Gallery, Exeter (2017). 

Sulaman-Butt won the British Muslim of the Year (2018) Arts and Cultural Awareness Award for her works representing people of Muslim heritage and racial minority, and has been shortlisted for ACS Studio Prize (2020), BP Portrait Award (2020), Aesthetica Art Prize (2017).

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