The National Museum of Qatar (NMoQ) has unveiled a large-scale and Middle East first museum installation by renowned Swiss artist Pipilotti Rist Sunday, offering visitors “an immersive experience of light and sounds”.
The NMoQ has partnered with the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) and the Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) to organise this one-of-its-kind exhibition, titled *Your Brain to Me, My Brain to You (2022), as it puts a spotlight on the importance of mental health.

The show, curated by Qatar Museums (QM) curatorial adviser Tom Eccles and the NMoQ's Head of Exhibitions Bouthayna M Baltaji, also serves as a reminder for people to engage in self-care by a number of means such as practicing mindfulness, being thankful, or even seeking professional counselling.
In a press statement, QM chairperson HE Sheikha Al-Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani said: “Visitors of all ages are sure to be captivated by Pipilotti Rist’s dazzling artwork *Your Brain to Me, My Brain to You, a journey of light and sound that plunges participants into the intricacies of the human brain while at the same time sweeping them across the natural landscape of Qatar.”
“I am thrilled to announce that after its initial presentation at the NMoQ, this specially commissioned artwork will be permanently installed at Dadu, Children's Museum of Qatar, where it will be part of the future museum’s stimulating and inspiring family experiences in the heart of Doha,” she added.
The exhibition will be on view until December 20, giving residents and hundreds of thousands of football fans who will be coming for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 the opportunity “to embark on a journey of self-discovery through a multisensory experience that inspires introspection and awe”.
The installation, described as a “pixel forest”, comprises 12,000 LEDs (light emitting diodes) strung on cables throughout the gallery for visitors to navigate.
Representing neurons, constantly firing and communicating with each other, the pulsing resin-encased bulbs have been programmed in choreography with a soundscape and featuring abstract footage of Qatar’s landscapes.
“The idea with the exhibition is to tackle mental health … for this reason, we partnered with the MoPH, which has a national mental health campaign called ‘Are You OK? Your Mind Matters’,” Baltaji said.
The exhibition supports the goals of the partnership between the MoPH, the World Health Organisation, and the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, aimed at making the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar a beacon for physical and mental health promotion, and a model for ensuring future mega sport events are healthy and safe.
Rist said that her work is both a collective and individual experience, aiming to understand what is happening inside the brain of the other.
“And culture is the main way to try to understand each other beyond language,” she said. “I'm very much interested in rooms where people come together. Today, the electronic image is often separating us, everyone is looking to their own device.”
“And then I'm searching for possibilities how we can use electronics as wonder lights to bring us together," Rist added.
Organisers noted that the exhibition is inspired by the NMoQ and the landscape, history, and people of Qatar.
Following the trajectory of the NMoQ – from early geology through the evolution of the Qatari people, pearling, oil exploration and the incredible growth of Qatar – the installation is a place for contemplation and awe.
In a press statement, Assistant Minister for Health Affairs Dr Salih Ali al-Marri said: "This installation demonstrates our commitment to raising mental health awareness across a diverse range of cultural organisations and population groups.”
“Specifically, engaging people through the medium of art to express themselves and connect to others in ways which surpass cultural, language and psychological barriers,” he added.
HMC’s Mental Health Service chief executive Iain Francis Tulley, who is also the National Health Strategy Lead of the MoPH’s Mental Health and Wellbeing, lauded the exhibition.
“The exhibition is a fantastic metaphor in terms of helping people to forget the stigma and enter an experience that allows people to become much more mindful about life,” he said.
As part of the commission, the NMoQ has allocated two educational spaces inside the gallery, inviting visitors to practice mindfulness and to express their interpretation of Rist’s installation in relation to mental well-being on a dedicated writing wall.
In line with the coronavirus (Covid-19) restrictions imposed by the MoPH to ensure the health and safety of the public, it is mandatory for all visitors to book tickets online ahead of their visit to the museum.
Entry to the exhibition is free of charge.