Malala Yousafzai Portrait Unveiling

Alumni, friends and staff attended the official unveiling of a portrait of Nobel Prize winner Malala Yousafzai at the University's Barber Institute of Fine Arts.

The extraordinary 3m-high oil painting by artist and alumnus, Nasser Azam (BCom Industrial Economics & Business Studies, 1983) was revealed to around 70 guests in attendance.  The portrait took Azam over a year to complete, and was donated to the University as part of its Circles of Influence fundraising campaign.

Prior to the speeches given by Azam and Yousafzai, guests were given an opportunity to speak with the artist about the painting and why he chose Yousafzai as his subject.  For Azam, he was inspired by Yousafzai's activism and wanted to create a piece of work that reflected that.  

Following Azam’s talk, Yousafzai gave a heart-felt speech about her love for Birmingham and how grateful she was for what the city had done for her: “Birmingham is very special for me because it is here that I found myself alive, seven days after I was shot… I love this place, I am proud to be called a Brummie".  Photos from the event can be found on our Flickr site.

The portrait will be digitally displayed at the Library of Birmingham and will be added to the National  Portrait Gallery’s electronic archive.

You can read more about the portrait unveiling on the BBC, The Guardian, and ITV News.