The Museum of Islamic Art, MIA, opened its double exhibition on glass of the Islamic world. The exhibitions feature over one hundred pieces of glass from the museum collection, most of which were never on show before, as well as some contributions from a number of collections belonging to Qatar Museum Authority.
The two exhibitions are connected in their exploration of Islamic glass, but different in seeing it from new perspectives, both ancient and modern. The exhibitions will stay on view until January 7, 2013 on the fourth level of the Museum of Islamic Art.
Commenting on the importance of this double exhibition for MIA, Aisha Al Khater, Director of the Museum of Islamic Art, said: “The Museum of Islamic Art is proud to present its first in-house exhibition. These exhibitions, which explore an area that is of essence to the Middle East region, focus on the technique and the beauty of the artifacts. The Islamic Glass exhibitions commence a series of in-house exhibitions curated by our own specialists and using the splendid collections of the Museum of Islamic Art.”
Featuring the contributions of ancient and medieval glassmaking techniques, methods and history of the production of Islamic glass, “The Intelligence of Tradition: Antiquity and Early Islamic Glass” exhibition is on view in the east gallery. Ancient and early Islamic glass pieces are displayed together to illustrate the ancient Egyptian, Hellenistic, Roman and Sasanian techniques used by Islamic glassmakers. Short films on glass blowing and decorative techniques with narration were produced for this exhibition, demonstrating methods used in the Islamic world. They are shown in the screening room attached to the gallery.
The “Illuminations: the Mosque Lamp as Iconographic Image” exhibition in the west gallery showcases mosque lamps highlighting their iconographic symbolism in Islamic art. A short history about the forms and displays of lamps and a number of depictions of the traditional medieval-era lamps are displayed on one side of the gallery. On the other side, a display of European revival lamps of the late 19th century and Orientalist imagery explores the lamp as an icon of Islamic art and exoticism and highlights their perception by collectors and artists up until the present day.
Admission to the exhibition is free of charge.
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