Posted on April 28, 2018

Qatar Museums (QM) and its Chairperson Her Excellency Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani took part in The New York Times (NYT) Art Leaders Network meeting in Berlin last week.

During the event, QM unveiled new details about the upcoming National Museum of Qatar, including its new brand identity designed in collaboration with QM and local creative design agency The Creative Union. First glimpses into the collection that will be showcased at NMoQ were also provided with the help of the Google Arts & Culture project, created by the Google Cultural Institute, which captured stunning imagery of 16 of the artefacts that will be displayed at the National Museum. 

The event was also attended by Qatar's Ambassador to Germany Sheikh Saoud bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, Germany's Ambassador to Qatar Hans-Udo Muzel and Mansoor bin Ebrahim Al Mahmoud, QM Chief Executive Officer and Special Advisor to the Chairperson, Her Excellency Sheikha Al Mayassa. The Art Leaders Network platform is the international iteration of the Art for Tomorrow conference, which launched in Qatar in 2015 with the support of QM. Gathering the art world's most influential leaders and experts, discussions at the Berlin event touched on the most pressing challenges and opportunities shaping the international art market in the years ahead, from the future of art museums to the rising art centers.

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HE Sheikha Al Mayassa took part in a debate on the promise and peril of expansion, together with Diller Scofidio + Renfro Founding Partner Elizabeth Diller, President and CEO of The Metropolitan Museum of ArtDaniel H. Weiss and NYT Culture Reporter and 2018 Art Leaders Network Programme Director Robin Pogrebin. HE Sheikha Al Mayassa provided delegates with important insights into the changing shape of Qatar's arts and culture scene,  highlighting the successful trajectory of opening world-class museums like the IM Pei-designed Museums of Islamic Art, Mathaf: The Arab Museum of Modern Art and the upcoming National Museum of Qatar designed by Jean Nouvel. As institutions representing the universal language of art, these museums have not only helped connect with local audiences but created a ripple effect internationally. garnering praise and recognition.

HE Sheikha Al Mayassa headlined a special panel discussion on art and architecture shaping national identity, highlighting the National Museum of Qatar as a beacon of Qatar's heritage and future as an art centre. Fellow panellists including French contemporary artist Jean-Michel Othoniel, world-famous architects Jean Nouvel and Rem Koolhaas, and Herzog & De Meuron partner Jacques Herzog, joined HE in sharing their experiences gained through revered careers and experience developing iconic projects in Qatar. The panel discussion took place at the recently renovated Der Diwan – the Arab Culture House, which also hosted a private showing of work from some of Qatar's brightest emerging artists. Artworks from Aisha Al Sowaidi, Emelina Soares, Hana Al Saadi and Bouthayna Al-Muftah demonstrated the quality and impact of modern art from Qatar to new audiences in Germany.  

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Speaking on the sidelines of the Art Leaders Network event, Qatar Museums' Chief Strategic Planning Officer Khalid Al Ibrahim said: "Art, creativity and heritage play an important role in Qatar and support the realisation of our National Vision 2030. Taking a leading role in developing this platform reflects our country's progress in bridging cultures, encouraging cultural exchange and nurturing creative talent. It is a privilege to take part in discussion with such a diverse and renowned group of experts, cultural figures and institutions from around the world. I am confident this event will support continued communication between nations and people, and demonstrate the power of art and culture in inspiring dialogue and enriching lives."

Under the patronage of Her Excellency Sheikha Al Mayassa, Qatar Museums has made significant progress during the last 13 years in connecting the nation's cultural institutions and heritage sites to enable them to flourish. Being a founding partner of the Art Leaders Network meeting is further proof of the organisation's success in consolidating Qatar's efforts to become a vibrant centre for the arts, culture and education, in the Middle East and beyond.