About the Orientalist Museum
The Orientalist Museum has of one of the most significant collections of Orientalist art ever assembled in the world. It offers a unique ideology of Orientalist art history and is the only institution in the world dedicated solely to Orientalist art. Its collection of paintings, watercolours, drawings and prints, as well as sculpture and applied art traces Orientalism back to the early 16th century.
Because the Orientalist Museum is currently not in full operation, it is not open to the general public. However, for those interested in viewing some of the collection, selections of significant artworks are loaned to international museums for exhibitions on a regular basis, as well as displayed in exhibitions organized by the Orientalist Museum, itself, here in Doha and internationally. These events are updated regularly on the news link as well as in the Orientalist Museum’s newsletter.
Through future exhibitions and programming, the Orientalist Museum will map one of the most influential periods in art history, and by linking it to the present will be able to deliver a new understanding of the world of the ‘others’.
The Orientalist art movement, although a predominantly 19th century phenomenon, started in the time of the Renaissance and continued throughout the years emerging in the 21st century seen through new forms and techniques. Themes and places of interest to Orientalist artists span the geographical areas of Middle Eastern and North African Islamic countries. However, Orientalism as an art movement cannot be associated with any particular European country nor encapsulated in any of the local ‘schools’, as throughout the centuries it was exercised by different Western cultures who documented their experiences of extraordinary meetings with inhabitants of the ‘other’. Orientalism as a historical and cultural event has been uniting various aspects of cultural life for a number of centuries, including literature, fine arts, architecture, music, and philosophy, and has generated an exotic image within our consciousness, one that has a right to its own existence
Current & Upcoming Activities
The Orientalist Museum’s set of “Four Tales of Arabian Nights” lithographs by Marc Chagall will participate in the “Marc Chagall” exhibition at the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum in Madrid from Feb. 14 to May 20, 2012. For more information about this exhibition click here.
Marc Chagall, Four Tales of Arabian Nights
Click here for more information: the Desert of Forbidden Art Films
“A Journey into the World of the Ottomans” exhibition from October 29, 2010 to January 24, 2011 (Orientalist Museum)
This exhibition was held on the occasion of Doha being the cultural capital of the Middle East and Istanbul being the cultural capital of Europe in 2010. A major part of the artworks came from the Orientalist Museum's own collection, in addition to selections from the Rijksmuseum and other private collections. The artworks selected illustrated the history and development of the Orientalist art movement from the 16th to 21st centuries, which throughout the years has shaped the image of the Ottoman world in Europe, covering various genres of Orientalist art.