National Museum of Qatar to reopen permanent galleries
September 27 2020 09:49 PM
Decorative elements included in the collection.
Decorative elements included in the collection.

The museum will debut Splendours of the Ancient East: Antiquities from the Al-Sabah Collection Special Exhibition from October 1, marking Qatar’s deep-rooted and unique relationship with Kuwait and revealing new insights into the ancient roots of Islamic Art

The National Museum of Qatar (NMoQ) will reopen its permanent galleries and unveil the landmark exhibition, Splendours of the Ancient East: Antiquities from The al-Sabah Collection, in its Temporary Exhibition Gallery on October 1.

Drawn from the extraordinary holdings assembled in Kuwait by Sheikh Nasser Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah and Sheikha Hussa Sabah al-Salem al-Sabah, more than 170 objects provide a sweeping overview of the artistic and material culture of the ancient world, while also revealing new insights into the roots of Islamic art.

In light of the pandemic, Qatar Museums (QM) has implemented health and safety protocols that include requiring visitors to purchase tickets in advance on QM’s website. Additionally, visitors must present a “green” health status on the Ehteraz virus-tracing app, and bring and wear face coverings for the duration of their visit.

The objects selected for Splendours of the Ancient East: Antiquities from The al-Sabah Collection range in date from the third millennium BCE to the fifth century CE. They include: jewellery and adornments (rings, earrings, necklaces, pendants, bracelets, buckles, and buttons); household furnishings (bowls, beakers, jars, ewers, cups, rhytons, bottles, dishes, and rugs); anthropomorphic and zoomorphic figurines and ritual objects; decorative elements; and carved gemstones and seals.

The objects in the exhibition are made with materials including gold, silver, bronze, lapis lazuli, carnelian, turquoise, garnet, agate, amethyst, pearl, diamond crystals, glass, ivory, alabaster and enamel.

The use of such precious materials, and the exquisite workmanship of these artifacts, made it possible for these objects to be preserved and treasured for millennia. They now testify to an artistic heritage that flourished in the Gulf region and nourished the later achievements of Islamic art.

NMoQ’s reopening timings are as follows: Saturday to Thursday from 9am to 7pm, and 1:30pm to 7:00pm on Friday.

Splendours of the Ancient East: Antiquities from the al-Sabah Collection will be on view through January 3, 2021.

NMoQ Reopening (Tickets and Visitor Guidelines)

NMoQ is open from Saturday to Thursday, between 9am and 7pm, and on Friday between 1:30pm and 7pm. It has implemented protocols is in accordance with recommendations from Qatar’s Health Protection and Communicable Disease Control office of the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH), based on milestones reached in controlling the Covid-19 pandemic.

In keeping with the guidelines set by the MoPH, a limited number of visitors and staff will be allowed in the museum at a time. Visitors will be required to reserve tickets in advance on QM’s website.

Upon arrival visitors will be required to present a “green” health status on the Ehteraz virus-tracing app. Masks are required for all visitors (12 years of age and older). Each person will also be checked for a normal temperature reading at the entrance. Visitors who have a temperature or do not have a mask will not be allowed into the NMoQ .

Hand sanitiser stations will be placed throughout the location encouraging visitors to keep their hands clean. Signage reminding visitors to keep a safe distance from other visitors will also be visible on site. Cloak rooms will be unavailable during this period. In addition, interactive features such as touchscreens will be temporarily removed, and gallery guides will be offered online only.

In addition to the special exhibition, Splendours of the Ancient East: Antiquities from The al-Sabah collection, and permanent galleries, guests will be able to visit the National Museum’s gift shops ad Jiwan, the museum’s restaurant, which will operate at a limited capacity, maximum of six people per table inside and 10 for outdoor terrace tables, from Saturday to Thursday for lunch and afternoon tea.

The Desert Rose and Café 875 will also be open at a limited capacity, as will the museum’s playground and library. The collection galleries of the NMoQ remain closed due to maintenance.

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