Call for Submissions from Rohingya Artists: 'Rohingya Voices: Crisis, Resilience and Hope'

"Reality of Rohingya" depicts flight from violence in Myanmar and was one of the winning entries for Oxfam International’s 2020 Rohingya Arts Competition. It was painted by Enayet Khan, a 21-year-old artist living in Bangladesh’s Cox’s Bazar refugee camps.

As part of our 2021 Rohingya arts competition, Oxfam International is seeking submissions from Rohingya artists. We invite submissions that broadly relate to the theme “Rohingya Voices: Crisis, Resilience & Hope”, and respond to some of the following questions: What is important to you in your day to day life and why? What does your daily reality look and feel like? Did this change with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. If yes, how? What does a better future look like for you? What do you hope for?

Through August 2021, Oxfam International will celebrate and highlight the work of Rohingya artists on our social media channels. This August marks four years since the begining of the ongoing exile of more than 700,000 people from Myanmar into Bangladesh and while the 'Rohingya refugee crises' is often talked about on news media, Rohingya people are  rarely heard.  As Oxfam, we want to change this. The Rohingya arts competition is one way in which we are amplifying the voices and perspectives of Rohingya people in Myanmar, Bangladesh and around the world.

As part of this competition, we invite all Rohingya artists, residing in Myanmar, Bangladesh or any another country, to submit a maximum of two original creative pieces that fit the theme of “Rohingya Voices; Crisis, Resilience & Hope" by August 2, 2021. Submissions can include visual art, poetry, song or other creative forms of expression. All submissions must be sent to by 2 August and meet the requirements outlined below, including a description of the artwork and the artist (as outlined in the section “How to Apply”).

We strongly encourage submissions from Rohingya women artists.

Details for submission:

Who can submit? What forms of art can be submitted?

Any Rohingya artist who is willing to have their original creative work shared through Oxfam social media channels, website, and other public forums.

Submissions of visual art (including painting, sketches, collage, crafts, digital artwork etc.), poetry, song lyrics and/or recorded music, video recordings of dance or other forms of creative expression.

Criteria for selection:

An Oxfam committee will select the winning submissions based on the following criteria:

How well the submissions tell a compelling story or share an important perspective related to the theme of “Rohingya Voices: Crisis, Resilience & Hope".

How aesthetically powerful a submission is and whether it aligns with Oxfam’s values.

Reflects a diversity of submissions in terms of style and form of the pieces, as well as gender and geographic location of the artists.

What will selected recipients receive? How will the winning submissions be used?

Oxfam will select 10 original submissions by Rohingya artists for inclusion in this project, based on the criteria above. The selected artists will have their creative pieces showcased and promoted on Oxfam websites and social media channels as well as via other public forums (including art exhibitions and events). Here is our 2020 Rohingya Arts Competition website, which will give you a sense of how winning entries will be displayed:

Your piece of art and the description shared may be used to support Oxfam’s awareness-raising and public engagement efforts related to the Rohingya crisis and to help raise money so it can continue its work. Your work and description could appear on Oxfam or partner websites, on social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram), in a report or via media (including newspapers, radio, television).

How to apply?

Submissions should be sent via email to by Friday August 2nd 2021. Artists who need additional support in submitting their piece of art, can send an email outlining the support required.

Each artist is allowed to enter a maximum of two submissions that fit within the theme “Rohingya Voices: Crisis, Resilience & Hope”

Each submission must include:

A short description of what the artwork means to the artist, how it relates to the theme and why the artist was inspired to create the artwork

A short description or biography of the artist (this can be recorded in Rohingya language or written in Myanmar or English languages.) Please be aware that selected submissions and accompanying information will be shared publicly. If you do not feel safe to use your real name publicly, including on social media, please also submit a pseudonym for public use.

Contact information for the artist, including email and telephone number.

Any submissions of photographs or video with identifiable faces should only be submitted with consent from the subject.