Posted on July 04, 2012

Qatar Museums Authority opened its “Olympics Through Media” exhibition today at QMA Gallery, Building 10, in Katara. Open to the public from July 4 to September 9 2012, this exhibition is organised by two museum departments within QMA to celebrate the beginning of the XXX Olympiad in London. Displayed are important historical artifacts and visual materials sourced from the collection of the Qatar Olympic and Sports Museum and QMA’s media collection.

The Olympic Games represent one of the few global media events. They have historically been used to introduce and showcase new filming technologies and production techniques. From their humble beginnings the Olympic Games and motion pictures in general have developed together in sophistication to reach a truly global audience nowadays. 

Both the Modern Olympic Games and motion pictures emerged in 1896, however, it was not until the advent of television that the synergy between the Games and the media grew into the worldwide phenomena it is today. Groundbreaking cinematographic techniques were used during the 1936 Olympics in Berlin to capture the athletes from a range of different perspectives using multiple movie cameras and, for the first time, limited live television broadcasts were tried.

Eventually, the 1948 Olympics in London were the first Games to be covered by a public TV service. The exhibition showcases milestones of the co-evolution of Olympics and media such as the first Olympic Games that were broadcast on colored television, Mexico City 1968, and the first Olympic Games that utilised the internet, Atlanta 1996.

Commenting on the importance of this exhibition, Dr Christian Wacker, Director of the Qatar Olympic and Sports Museums stated: “The concept of Olympics Through Media exhibition has been researched, organised and developed entirely by Qatar Olympic and Sports Museum and the media collection department.  All objects on show are from QMA’s sports and media collections and we are proud to share them with our community. The exhibition highlights how historical moments were captured in each of the Olympic Games since 1896 and offers an enjoyable interactive experience for all ages. I invite everyone to visit and participate in our education activities.” 

An extensive educational program complements the exhibition with a children’s lounge, video game competitions, and a children's holiday program. The program, titled “Light & Shadow,” will run from 8 - 19 July and from 26 August - 6 September, it offers various activities teaching children about the history of the Olympics and media. It will be a fun and interactive way to learn about the Games and the stories behind them.

Guided tours are also available giving a deeper insight into the exhibition and four gallery lectures led by experts and experienced lecturers will be organised during the exhibition period and covering the following subjects:

- The Televisual Technology at the 1936 Olympic Games

- Woman and Media in the Olympic Games

- Cinema and Olympic Games

- Internationalism, Peace and Media

The exhibition will open daily before and after the month of Ramadan from 9am-12pm and 5pm -10pm, except on Friday, when it will be open from 7pm-12am. During Ramadan gallery hours are from 9am - 12pm and 7pm - 12am from Saturday to Thursday, and from 7pm - 12am on Friday. Admission to the exhibition and educational activities is free of charge.