Muscat: Oman and Qatar have a shared culture along with the rest of the Arab world that everyone can relate to, the director of the new National Museum of Qatar has said.
Speaking to Times of Oman on the occasion of the opening of the National Museum of Qatar, Sheikha Amna bint Abdulaziz bin Jassim Al Thani, Director of the National Museum of Qatar, said there were also plans to host works of art from Omani artists in the future.
“I welcome people from Oman to come and enjoy the museum,” she said. “In terms of a shared Arab culture, the history of our development is quite shared in many ways, because we all have a shared past, such as a shared pearling industry, for example. The global visitor can come here and see how this impacted all of us. He can also see how the crash of the pearling industry in 1925 affected all of us, when the cultured Chinese and Japanese pearls came into the market.
“It was a dark period, but through every dark period you have a silver lining, and that was the coming of oil, so then you have the story of oil,” added Sheikha Amna.
“These galleries are very emotive, and they shift through darker ones, and we purposely made them emotive to evoke the dark feeling.”
Her Highness also said that the National Museum of Qatar’s exhibits were made after collaborating with Arab communities, so that they could relate to the developments showcased in the museum.
“The development of the content was very much local, because we wanted to reach out to the community and make sure that this is something that all of us could share,” said Sheikha Amna. “There was a lot of testing that we did to make sure everything fit in with everything.”
In context to whether Omani artists, as well as others from the region, would be invited to showcase their works at the museum, she said, “Definitely, the opening is just the start of the dialogue. People will come in, and they will see all of this, and they will understand. We also have our own shared culture, for example, this year, we are celebrating the year of India, and one of artists in the galleries is a filmmaker from India.”