Queen Elizabeth appoints Nadia Samdani as MBE

MBE is the third highest-ranking Order of the British Empire award

Queen Elizabeth II has appointed British-Bangladeshi national Nadia Samdani as a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) for her services to global art philanthropy and for supporting the arts in Bangladesh, South Asia, and the United Kingdom.

MBE is the third highest-ranking Order of the British Empire award. 

Samdani has brought attention to Bangladeshi contemporary artists both at home and abroad through her efforts with the Samdani Art Foundation. This has resulted in their works being included in major international public institutions and collections.

Regarding the recognition, Nadia Samdani said: “It’s an extraordinary honor to receive recognition for over a decade of supporting and nurturing artistic talent. It’s been heartening to see the huge levels of public engagement with our work, and how the foundation has fostered new cross-cultural dialogues between Bangladesh and the rest of the world. 

“I am thrilled that this honor comes as part of celebrations for Her Majesty the Queen’s 70-year reign, and her length of service and commitment is something I hope to emulate in my ongoing work,” she added.

Nadia Samdani is the first and only South Asian to receive the prestigious Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage award along with her husband Rajeeb Samdani in 2017.

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Besides, she has been awarded for promoting the Bangladeshi art scene on the global platform and she has also been listed in the Power 100 list of ArtReview from 2015 to present.

Nadia Samdani is the co-founder and president of Samdani Art Foundation and director of Dhaka Art Summit. 

In 2011, Samdani along with her husband Rajeeb Samdani established the Samdani Art Foundation to support the work of Bangladesh and South Asia’s contemporary artists and architects and increase their exposure.

As part of the initiative, she founded the Dhaka Art Summit, the highest visited art summit in the world, which has since completed five successful editions under her leadership and welcomed a record 477,000 visitors in its last edition in 2020.