Building on the outstanding public response at the recently held exhibition at the Grandmaster's Palace in Valletta - Malta, The Majlis – Cultures in Dialogue, a travelling cross-cultural exhibition that features a collection of the Sheikh Faisal bin Qassim Al-Thani Museum continues its global touring showcase by landing at the Unesco headquarters in Paris on November 29.
The event, under the patronage of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani and Unesco Director General Audrey Azoulay, has been organised in collaboration with the Unesco Doha Office, the Qatar National Commission for Education, Culture and Science, and Qatar Museums.
With the Platinum sponsorship of Qatar Shell and local sponsorships of QNB and Refalo & Zammit Pace Advocates, the exhibition will run for two weeks before moving forward to other venues.
This diverse cultural exhibition recreates the atmosphere of the majlis - the space of hospitality and dialogue present in homes throughout the Arabian Gulf - offering guests the opportunity to exchange ideas about how much common ground exists between different cultures, and how these commonalities have been expressed in technology, art and culture.
Objects of great beauty and deep fascination including Chinese Qur’ans, mosque lamps made in Vienna, Persian carpets with Russian texts featuring the Virgin Mary, and mystic artefacts shared from Africa across the Arab world to India, will be seen at the exhibition.
HE Sheikh Faisal bin Qassim al-Thani said: “The tangible, intangible and documentary heritage of all people – their artefacts, handicrafts, arts and songs – are central to the existence of a cultured and civilised dialogue among nations. We hope that by sharing objects which connect peoples with their past we are keeping alive history, culture and traditions and highlighting how different cultures have much more commonalities than differences amongst them.”
Unesco Doha Office director Dr Anna Paolini said, "The Majlis – Cultures in Dialogue in Paris will be a good opportunity to showcase the crucial role and importance that museums play in the field of cultural dialogue and knowledge sharing.”
Dr Hamda al-Sulaiti, Secretary General of the Qatar National Committee for Education, Science and Culture, commented, “Such exhibitions are the cornerstones of cultural ties between people and offer greater insights into others rich heritage.”
Sheikh Nawaf bin Jassim bin Jabor al-Thani, chairman of Katara Hospitality said: "We are honoured to partner with ‘The Majlis - Cultures in Dialogue’ of Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al-Thani Museum in its first edition in Paris, which serves the same values of Katara Hospitality's in creating emotional connection through crafted unique experiences for guests and visitors."
Andrew Faulkner, chairman and managing director, Qatar Shell Companies, noted: “This initiative shows Qatar’s commitment to promoting outreach, openness and integration through the nation’s cultural heritage, while also linking this heritage to those of other peoples and civilisations.”
Following Paris, the exhibition will visit several European countries, including Austria, Germany, Spain, Turkey, and the UK. The tour will also include the US by 2021.