NMoQ announces TOTAL as official sponsor of new Energy Playground

NMoQ announces TOTAL as official sponsor of new Energy Playground

George Julius Williams | Consulting Editor

Doha: In a high-profile signing ceremony, Qatar Museums (QM) under the patronage of its Chairperson, Her Excellency Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, announced that TOTAL, one of the top integrated oil and gas companies in Qatar, is the official sponsor of the new energy playground at the National Museum of Qatar (NMOQ).

The signing ceremony welcomed, Her Excellency Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, Ahmad Al Namla, Acting CEO at Qatar Museums, Patrick Pouyanné Total’s Chairman and CEO and Laurent Wolffsheim, Total Qatar Country Chair, in the presence of invited other distinguished guests and media personnel. The collaboration between QM and TOTAL was signed at NMOQ premises on Saturday.

The sponsorship of the energy playground, one of the three playgrounds spread across the museum gardens, will provide a unique experience for families to explore and discover the story of energy, in particular, the story of oil, in relation to Qatar.

The NMoQ playground will be designed for families to engage in intergenerational kinetic play activities; from the extraction of crude oil, through to its processing and even its byproducts that in turn, benefit today’s societies.

The playground can be entered from various pathways – enabling a “choose your own adventure” industrialized experience and will ultimately expose visitors to the future of renewable and non-renewable energy.

The narrative of energy industries, like oil, is an ongoing theme explored across later galleries at NMOQ, which highlight topics such as the discovery of oil, oil negotiations, and correspondences, the rapid modernization the country witnessed due to the oil industry, as well as, the impact it has had on socio-cultural development.

A QM press release quoted Her Excellency Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani stating: “Here at Qatar Museums, we are constantly engaging our community with learning resources that can connect with various groups such as schools, families, as well as today’s youth in general. The energy playground is more than a playground — it’s a place for learning, a place for play — a sector that allowed Qatar to transform its economy to what it is today. Without the energy sector Qatar’s National Vision wouldn’t have been realizable.  We are grateful for Totals sponsorship, as a legacy for Year of Qatar France this playground will be available in 2020 for all of our communities to learn about energy through play.”

 

Commenting on the successful collaboration, Ahmad Al Namla said: “The energy playground will be a magnificent space for everyone to enjoy. This beautifully new interactive destination will safely teach children about a vital aspect of Qatar’s rich history and enable them to physically engage in our story of development. We thank TOTAL for their support in bringing this initiative to life and we look forward to welcoming families and children both living in and visiting Qatar.”

During the signing ceremony, Patrick Pouyanné, Chairman and CEO of Total said, “We highly cherish our newfound partnership with Qatar Museums, and with Her Excellency Sheikha Al Mayassa, and this reflects Total’s vision for youth inclusion and education, which is aligned with our ambition and values. Total, a committed energy partner of Qatar for over 80 years, is proud to play a role in ensuring that families understand our energy’s past and the path it is headed”.

Laurent Wolffsheim, Managing Director Total E&P Golfe and Country Chair also added “Next year will be the Qatar-France Year of Culture, and this partnership marks the celebration of the special relationship between Total and the State of Qatar. We also celebrate the rich history of oil and gas in Qatar, through the Energy playground’s interactive and engaging facilities”.

Credit: Qatar Museums

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NMoQ’s hosts talks on precious stone’s role in human history

NMoQ ’s host’s talks on precious stone’s role in human history

“Diamonds, Art and Science” lecture delivered courtesy of L’ecole Van Cleef & Arpels

*First diamonds in the world were discovered in India

DOHA: The National Museum of Qatar (NMoQ) recently hosted a talk titled “Diamonds, Art and Science” delivered courtesy of L’ecole Van Cleef & Arpels and in collaboration with Ali Bin Ali Luxury – the exclusive retailer of Van Cleef & Arpels in Qatar.

The talk was guided by Olivier Segura, scientific director at L’ecole Van Cleef & Arpels and Inezita Gay-Eckel, Jewellery art historian of L’ecole Van Cleef & Arpels.

The talk provided an overview of the latest findings in gemology, legends surrounding diamonds and the precious stone’s role in human history.

The hand-out catalogue entitled “The Fabulous Destiny of Tavernier’s Diamonds – From the Great Mogul to the Sun King ” describes the story of the diamonds acquired by Louis XIV from the famous rich travelling merchant Jean-Baptiste Tavernier (1605-1689) in 1668.

A fabulous story emerges based on a journey from the Mogul Empire of India and the diamond mines of Golkonda to France under the reign of the Sun King and the Château de Versailles, a journey made along the trade routes connecting East to West.

Amongst the several thousand diamonds brought from India by Tavernier and offered to the Sun King in 1668, twenty stood out for their breathtaking beauty

According to historians, in September 1638, Tavernier began his second journey, lasting to 1643, traveling via Aleppo to Persia, then to India as far as Agra, and from there to the Kingdom of Golconda. He visited the court of the Great Mogul—Emperor Shah Jahan—and made his first trip to the diamond mines.

India enjoys a very unique distinction of being the only country in the world to have discovered and possessed diamonds till about the 1800s.

The first diamonds in the world were discovered in India in the central regions, to be precise. The exact year when the first diamonds were mined is unknown so far, but historians say that the first known record of diamonds dates as far back as the 4th century BC. Diamonds are a universal symbol for commitment, love, strength, beauty and fortitude and with so many inherent qualities associated with diamonds, it is little wonder that this exquisite gem enjoys a special place in the world of gemology.

These precious stones have always enjoyed an aura of mysticism around them, credited mostly to their incomparable ability to refract light. Each type of culture around the world has its own fable around them.

The interesting talk centered not only on an overview of the latest findings in gemology but also delved into the legends surrounding diamonds.

Among other important facets of diamond and its earliest discoveries in India, then Brazil and now South Africa the hour-long plus talk by the two gemology experts also covered a whole range of topics dealing with the precious stone’s role in human history.

Answering a query from QI regarding the Koh-i-Noor (Mountain of Light) – one of the largest cut diamonds in the world, (186 carats) probably mined in the Kollur Mines during the period of the Delhi Sultanate and originally part of the Mughal Peacock Throne but now part of the British Crown Jewels, Inezita Gay-Eckel explained that the reshaping of the precious diamond in the 19th Century made it lose much of its brilliance.

(According to historians, in 1851 the Koh-i-Noor went on display at the Great Exhibition in London but the lackluster cut failed to impress viewers prompting Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria for the diamond to be re-cut as an oval brilliant by Royal Coster Diamonds oldest diamond polishing factory in the world.)

L’ecole Van Cleef & Arpels is a unique learning institution, founded in Paris in February 2012 at the instigation of its president Marie Vallanet-Delhom, welcoming the public into the secretive worlds of jewellery and watchmaking.

Its goal is to instill an intellectual and emotional understanding of the spirit of these exceptional crafts; to encourage mastery of their techniques through personal experience and to educate the hand, the eye and the sense of taste.

L’ecole Van Cleef & Arpels does so with the help of experts who are passionate about their subjects: art historians, virtuoso craftsmen, experienced jewellers, gemologists, master watchmakers and historians of time share their knowledge with students from all over the world.

Ali Bin Ali Luxury has been extremely glad to host L’ecole for the first time ever in Qatar and looks forward to many more educational sessions of the same.

Through organising a variety of talks, seminars and discussion panels, Qatar Museums (QM) aims to create platforms of inspiration for the local community, helping instigate a new generation of artists, designers, and creators.

Image Credit: dunesmagazine

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Qatar Museums uses Public Art to mark upcoming Blockade anniversary

Qatar Museums uses Public Art to mark upcoming Blockade anniversary

Doha: Qatar Museums (QM) has launched an open call for artists based in Qatar to propose a permanent public artwork to mark the third anniversary of the blockade of Qatar.

The air, land and sea blockade that was imposed on Qatar on the 5th of June 2017, marked a historic time of unprecedented national solidarity. Since then, it has become a catalyst for a new expression of public art across Qatar.

In a true showcase of the role of art in bringing communities together, the first anniversary of the blockade saw the unveiling of two key public art pieces: The first was Martin Creed’s “1361” (Everything is Going to be Alright) installation, which was created in the context of the anniversary of Qatar’s blockade and is still on display on the façade of Al Riwaq Gallery. The second piece, “A Blessing in Disguise”, was a creative commentary by political ARToonist Ghada Al Khater who generated praise for her take on the blockade. The second anniversary saw the unveiling of an original part of the Berlin Wall at Qatar National Convention Centre (QNCC) through an ongoing cultural collaboration with Qatar Foundation (QF).

QM has now called on artists to submit design proposals that describe their interpretations and reflections on the Blockade, as the country heads towards the third anniversary. Participating artists could be at any stage of their careers, but must possess strong skills to execute the proposed project by the 5th of May 2020. For its part, QM would support the chosen artist by providing financial assistance to realise the project. Artists are encouraged to submit their application on http://www.qm.org.qa/en/56-open-call  by the 1st of December, 2019. For any inquires, artists can contact:  [email protected]

Commenting on the announcement, Abdulrahman Ahmad Al Ishaq Head of Public Art at Qatar Museums stated: “Throughout history, art has been used for commentary on social and political realities. The same has been true for Qatar, where artists have used their creativity and wit to rise above the injustice. At Qatar Museums, we are proud to provide platforms of self-expression that aim to break boundaries and shatter misconceptions. This is an incredible opportunity for artists in Qatar to be part of our country’s history and participate in engraving a moment that has marked a generation.”

Public Art is a key pillar in QM’s mission to inspire local talent and establish an organic connection between art and the local community. The winning piece will join a diverse collection of paintings and artworks by local and international artists – all hand-picked for their immersive and thought-provoking nature.

Source Credit: Qatar Museums

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Set In Stone: Gems And Jewels From Royal Indian Courts expo opens at Museum of Islamic Art

Set In Stone: Gems And Jewels From Royal Indian Courts expo opens at Museum of Islamic Art

Doha: His Excellency Salah bin Ghanem Al Ali, the Minister of Culture and Sports, opened the Set in Stone: Gems and Jewels from Royal Indian Courts exhibition at the Museum of Islamic Art (MIA) yesterday.

Also present at the opening were Ahmad Musa Al-Namla, Acting Chief Executive Officer of Qatar Museums, H.E. Mr. P. Kumaran, Ambassador of India to the State of Qatar and several other dignitaries and guests.

The exhibition comes in celebration of the 2019 Year of Culture Qatar-India and presents a look at magnificent gems and jewellery from India. Set in Stone: Gems and Jewels from Royal Indian Courts showcase more than 100 pieces from across Qatar Museums’ (QM) collections, including many masterpieces that have never been displayed before. Drawing from MIA’s permanent collection, the National Museum of Qatar (NMoQ), and QM’s Orientalist Collection, this exhibition brings together a splendid array of jewellery, jewelled objects, works on paper, and photography. The exhibition is open from the 23rd of October 2019 to the 18th of January 2020.

For over 5,000 years, minerals and metals were extracted from India’s rich earth and crafted into beautiful pieces to adorn the body or give as offerings. India’s reputation for abundantly rich natural deposits attracted travellers and traders for centuries; so prized were these stones that wars were waged to win the right to exploit mines and control trade routes. The wealth of any Indian court was directly tied to the size and value of its royal treasury, and nowhere was this clearer than in the Mughal Empire (1526-1858).

Whether left in their natural state, carved, or set within gold, precious stones adorned a variety of objects that came to be associated with the wealthy elite, Emperors and Maharajas. Spectacularly opulent, these objects defined Indian luxury.

The exhibition is organized into four sections: “Precious Stones” reveals the cultural and economic importance of stones in India, tracing their history, sourcing, and trade in the early modern period. “Court & Ceremony” explores the role that gems, jewellery and jewelled objects played within a courtly context in the outward projection of wealth and status.

“Beyond the Court” demonstrates the personal, private and devotional uses of crafted jewels. “Qatar Connection, Pearls for Gold” recounts the long cultural and commercial exchanges between India and Qatar, as seen through the traditions of pearls and gold, and explores how this lineage has influenced local Qatari jewelry fashion.

Dr. Julia Gonnella, Director of the Museum of Islamic Art, said: “We are delighted to celebrate the opening of this extraordinary exhibition, developed as part of the Qatar-India Year of Culture. Set In Stone: Gems And Jewels From Royal Indian Courts allow us to present examples of the most spectacular pieces in the Museum of Islamic Art, along with important artworks and objects from other Qatar Museums’ collections.”

Exhibition highlights include ‘Indian-Cut’ diamonds from the famed mines of Golconda, in the Deccan (southern India), which – until the discovery of new diamond deposits in the 18th century – were the main source of diamonds throughout the world. MIA’s jeweled falcon, which most likely adorned the top of a throne, is a masterpiece of 17th-century Mughal craftsmanship and demonstrates the richness of the Mughal court.

Another highlight is the magnificent necklace from Varanasi: composed of seventeen diamonds suspended with gold-collared emeralds surmounted by baroque pearls, this necklace showcases the continued opulence of 19th-century Maharajas. The most impressive object on display is known as the ‘Clive flask’, a 17th-century jewel-encrusted jade flask that once belonged to Robert Clive, 1st Baron Clive of Plassey (1725-1774).

This object – remarkable for both its beauty and provenance – will be displayed in Doha for the first time.

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Indians in Qatar celebrate 5th International Day of Yoga with community get-togethers

Indians in Qatar celebrate 5th International Day of Yoga with community get-togethers

Indians in Qatar united in one accord to celebrate the 5th International Day of Yoga on June 21.

Assembling in large numbers in front of the iconic National Museum of Qatar (NMoQ) members of the Indian community joyfully embraced the spirit of Yoga in the early hours of the memorable day.

Indian Ambassador P. Kumaran was the chief guest and his presence encouraged people to participate in the fitness regime.

The impressive demonstration of Indian expats practicing yoga was organized by the Embassy of India in Doha jointly with Qatar Museums and other Indian community organizations registered under the patronage of the Indian Cultural Centre.

The demonstration was an excellent opportunity for supporters of yoga to showcase the importance of this exercise to others by underlining the benefits to mental, physical and spiritual well-being.

Yoga originated in India ages ago and is a traditional and ancient physical, mental and spiritual practice that focuses on the connection between the mind and the body.

There are multiple physical and mental benefits of yoga such as increased energy, improved metabolism, enhanced cardio and circulatory health, stress relief, calmness, and mental clarity, among others.

Led by the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Indian missions across the globe celebrated the International Day of Yoga with an unprecedented gettogether of like-minded yoga enthusiasts.

According to Manjri Saxena in the Gulf Times, “ We recently celebrated the fifth International Yoga Day in Qatar. It was a very well organised event that had good help from the volunteers. Thousands of people from different communities, including all age groups, gathered to mark the event.

Yoga has many benefits that go beyond maintaining physical well-being. It also has mental health benefits and can also help people in maintaining a balanced metabolism, apart from reducing stress and improved energy and vitality.

The main yoga event was conducted by a reputed instructor and all the people followed the instructions. It was quite a vision to see a mass yoga event taking place in Qatar”.

According to The Peninsula, the celebration was a part of the global commemoration of the International Day of Yoga and was held at National Museum of Qatar from 5 – 6 in the morning and at Qatar Sports Club Multi-Purpose Indoor Hall from 7 – 8 pm in the following evening.

Yoga camps and workshops were also held at Asian Town, Al Khor, and Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani Museum.

Dukhan recreational Centre hosted Yoga activities and many schools in Qatar also organised Yoga sessions during the week.

Yoga classes for Indian community-based in Al Khor were also organised by the community.

The various events in Qatar included Yoga demonstrations by experts and provided an opportunity for all to participate in sessions based on Common Yoga Protocol and comprised of various postures and breathing techniques, followed by meditation.

As a prelude to the celebration of the 5th International Day of Yoga, numerous workshops and also demonstrations in collaboration with well-known Doha based Yoga Studios were conducted by the Indian Embassy in last two months including workshops for students in various schools based in Doha.

The United Nations General Assembly on December 11, 2014, declared June 21 as the International Day of Yoga. Also on June 21, 2015, the first International Day of Yoga was celebrated worldwide.

Image Credit: https://twitter.com/IndEmbDoha/status/1143155142633623553

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QM to celebrate traditions from around the world at MIA Park

QM to celebrate traditions from around the world at MIA Park

Qatar Museums’ (QM), under the leadership of chairperson HE Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, is getting ready to host a colourful event this weekend to celebrate traditions and cultures from all over the world at the MIA Park.

International schools and communities have been invited to take part in this festival, which celebrates the rich and varied heritage of people residing in Qatar.

Countries represented by either the country’s Embassies, community groups, or schools, include Jordan, Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Tunisia, Palestine, Morocco, Bangladesh, Philippines, India, China, Tanzania, the US, Canada, Turkey, Afghanistan and Sudan.

During the event tomorrow and on Saturday, communities will give a glimpse into their cultures by showcasing traditional clothing items, music, games, books and much more.

In addition, a selection of delicious food and beverages representing each country will be on offer.

Salem al-Aswad, deputy director, Learning & Outreach at MIA said: “We’re proud to celebrate and recognise cultures from all over the world at MIA this weekend. It is wonderful to see individuals from all over the world come together to connect over music, books, children’s activities and delicious food. We hope that visitors take this opportunity to experience and engage with the different cultures that are available right here in Doha.”

The event at MIA compliments QM’s commitment to promote understanding, recognition and appreciation of different cultures, traditions and people in Qatar.

QM believes that culture is one of the most effective tools for bringing people closer together, encouraging dialogue and deepening understanding between people.

This is evident in its Years of Culture initiative, which was developed and designed to deepen understanding between nations and their people through mutual exchanges of arts, culture, heritage and sport.

Now in its sixth year, the Years of Culture programme has created sustainable platforms for collaboration and exchange between cultures, lasting long beyond the Years of Culture themselves.

Source Credit: http://www.gulf-times.com

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