The Ardabil Carpet on display at the Victoria and Albert Museum; hand knotted woollen pile, on silk warp and weft; asymmetrical knot; Iranian; 1539-40. ©

Victoria & Albert Museum, London

The V&A has specialised in collecting Islamic art since the 1850s, and was the first institution in the world to collect Islamic art as part of a mission to reform British industrial design.

The Museum’s founders considered Islamic art and design to be superior to most Western production, and they acquired examples to guide public taste and to provide models for contemporary manufacturing. The Museum’s collection is reflected in much later design, and through the Jameel Prize the V&A is able to show that Islamic art of the past still provides inspiration today.

The Jameel Prize is also part of the V&A’s programme of activities designed to develop cultural links around the world and promote cultural understanding.

Wael Shawky. Cabaret Crusade II: The Path to Cairo (2012) HD video, colour, sound, English subtitles, 60 minutes. ©

Wael Shawky; Courtesy the artist & Lisson Gallery.

Bahia Shehab. A Thousand Times No (2010). Plexiglas. Courtesy of the artist. ©

Farah Behbehani. 

Lara Assouad. Tabati (My Ball) (2011). Book. Courtesy of the artist. ©

Lara Assouad.

Bahia Shehab. A Thousand Times No (2010). Artist’s book (1016 pages). Courtesy of the artist. ©

Bahia Shehab

Ghulam Mohammad. Untitled (2014). Paper collage and ink on wasli paper. Private collection. ©

Usman Javaid.