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A walk through QatarÔÇÖs Arty Side

Wednesday, 14 December 2016
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Qatar might be in the spotlight for winning the rights to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, but this GCC country has also quietly emerged as the Gulf regionÔÇÖs artistic hub. Qatar has for years invested heavily in art, culture, heritage experiences, and supporting state-owned museums and galleries. Take a journey through QatarÔÇÖs artsy side by heading to some of its major museum spaces:

Arab Museum of Modern Art
Opened in 2010, MATHAF, the Arab museum of modern art focusses on contemporary Arab art in the Gulf. By visiting the exhibitions, you can explore the achievements of Arab artists through all forms of media. The permanent collection here, houses art works dating back to the mid-19th century. Lectures and educational programmes are designed to give visitors a deeper understanding of Arab art.

Fire Station Art Centre
The building is indeed an old fire station that was converted into a creative space. ItÔÇÖs where emerging artists take part in an ÔÇ£artist in residenceÔÇØ programme, where they work exclusively in the venue for a stipulated period, and have their works exhibited. 2017 is set to be a banner year, with exhibitions dedicated to art greats Pablo Picasso and Alberto Giacometti.

QatarArts

Museum of Islamic Art
Discover one of the worldÔÇÖs finest collections of Islamic art in this stunning building sitting right on the waters of the Corniche, designed by renowned architect Ieoh Ming Pei. The Mathaf Al-Fann Al-Islami (to give it its proper name) brings together works from across the Middle East and Central Asia, from ceramics and textiles to carpets and manuscripts.

National Museum of Qatar
The new museum is a truly breathtaking sight. Designed by architect Jean Nouvel and inspired by the petals of a desert rose, it takes shape through a series of interlocking disks built around the historic Amiri Palace ÔÇô the former home of the National Museum. The museumÔÇÖs designers want to create a new kind of cultural institution that prioritised participation, and theyÔÇÖve succeeded. Doors will open in 2017.

Sheikh Faisal bin Qassim al Thani Museum
Situated outside the city in Al Samriya, the Sheikh Faisal Museum is housed in a historic fort. Within, you will find an eclectic collection of over 15,000 artworks collected from around the world and encompassing Islamic art, rare vehicles and coins.

Apart from the museums, the Qatari government is committed to installing art in public places. YouÔÇÖll find striking pieces dotted around the city. Two more mega-museums are also due to open in the not-too-distant future: the Olympic and Sports Museum, and the Orientalist Museum. Their arrival will add even more heft to QatarÔÇÖs reputation as the artistic centre of the Gulf region.

Last modified on Wednesday, 14 December 2016 14:12