MakeOver (2008-)

In the Make-Over (20103) series of drawings Syed drew symbols, such as beards, and sentences or words, with multiple meanings, onto Western male figures to re-orientate them and see what would happen after a stereotypical ‘Muslim terrorist make-over’.

Over a period of time, newspaper cuttings and magazines were collected mainly for their covers, this included Time, Newsweek, The Economist and renowned men’s fashion magazines. Syed was interested in covers that had an image of a Western male with a tag line that could be used to stereotype the West with icons of Muslim stereotypes such as the beard in a humorous yet sensational manner. He was also interested in cover stories that in some way related to post-9/11 Islam: resurgences, fundamentalism and terrorism, and their link to war, economy and political instability. Syed was surprised to find the frequency of sensational images and gloomy headlines and above all, was very disturbed to see Pakistan’s name appear as a “troubled nation” and “the most dangerous place” on earth.