National Museum of Qatar (NMoQ) has started moving parts of its expansive collection to the new museum building on the Doha Corniche, which will feature 14 galleries and state-of-the-art technology, it has been announced.
According to NMoQ, conservation teams last month shifted the first group of 1,500 artefacts to the new building, a desert rose-inspired project designed by Pritzker Prize-winning French architect Jean Nouvel.
“This is a major milestone in the development of National Museum of Qatar as we enter the final phase of preparations ahead of the opening,” NMoQ director Sheikha Amna bint Abdulaziz bin Jassim al-Thani said in a press statement.
“The collection will now begin its journey to its new home from various locations in Doha, giving our patrons glimpses of what the museum will showcase along the way,” Sheikha Amna noted.
The museum’s collection will be kept in its modern storage facilities with adaptable functionalities until curatorial fitout begins later this year.
However, only parts of its vast collection will be on display at any given time.
NMoQ noted that transporting a museum collection “is a long-term and thorough process, which started months ago. Initial phase saw the NMoQ team identifying and sorting various items into three categories, comprising artefacts that contain organic materials such as leather, textile and wood that need to be frozen prior to entering the new facility; artefacts with inorganic materials such as metals, stone and ceramics that do not require freezing and disinfection; and fragile items that require special packing.
"This process helped guide the careful transportation of each artefact to ensure it was preserved and cared for properly on the way to its new home. It is exciting for the fantastic National Museum of Qatar collection to start coming to the forefront,” Sheikha Amna said.
“Thousands of artefacts will be on display at the museum, supported by large-format film displays that will immerse the visitors in our art, heritage and culture as they walk through the winding hallways of this extraordinary building,” Sheikha Amna added.
Archaeological objects in Qatar will also be displayed in the museum.
NMoQ has been the focus of several high-profile initiatives in recent months, unveiling its new brand identity and launching the popular 'Voices' campaign.
The 'Voices' are members of the local community representing all nationalities, age groups and professions, who have been asked to share their stories and memories of the Old National Museum to stress NMoQ’s focus on telling the story of Qatar’s people through their eyes.
NMoQ is set to give voice to the country’s rich heritage and history while celebrating its future.
Visitors to the museum will be able to learn about Qatar's past and the modernisation of Qatari society.
Exhibitions will combine historic objects and contemporary influences, opening up a dialogue around the impact of rapid change.
Innovative presentation techniques will excite audiences and push boundaries.
The new NMoQ building is one of the most significant cultural projects in Qatar and also among the most ambitious museums projects of its kind, anywhere in the world.
Its construction started in 2011.
Seemingly growing organically out of the ground, the museum’s structure surrounds the Old Palace of Sheikh Abdullah Bin Jassim al-Thani.
It is one of most recognisable landmarks in the country and serves as a monument to a historic way of life in Qatar.