There is so much to see in Doha, Qatar, here are some of our  art and culture highlights…

1The Fire Station Gallery, Doha

A flourishing art scene may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Qatar. So I was curious to learn that artists and writers have come together in a converted fire station in Doha to meet and work together.

On this cultural tour of Doha, my first visit was to the Fire Station Gallery. Since it was hosting the first exhibition of it’s kind in the Middle East, I popped by to check it out. The exhibition show cased the works of Pablo Picasso and Alberto Giacometti. This is especially relevant because it follows a larger exhibition in Paris. The pieces are on loan to Qatar from the Musée National Picasso, Fondation Giacometti and other international collections. Furthermore, the exhibition is free and runs until 21st May 2017.
The central courtyard of the Fire Station Gallery is stunning. It has great symmetry, fountains and a copper wall.
There is also a book store and an art supply shop for visitors. You can stop for a light snack at Cafe 999 at the Fire station: http://www.firestation.org.qa/999-cafe. Their menu includes camel burgers. Yum!
(You can see some of the exhibition at The Fire Station Gallery here:

2The Museum of Islamic Art, Doha

My second stop was at the The Museum of Islamic Art which is built on an artificial peninsula. The building and its surroundings are as important as what’s inside. The architect responsible for the design of the building is I. M. Pei who is 91 years old. It has water features, arches and many other important aspects which are especially relevant in Islamic design.

The grand entrance to the museum with its impressive fountain.

There is also a wonderful view of the Doha skyline through the arches. It is probably one of the most photographed places in Doha!

    

Some of the items on display at http://www.mia.org.qa/en/

It’s the first time I visited a museum of Islamic art. I found the artefacts fascinating and rather beautiful. It is difficult to explain how big this collection is since it spreads over 1400 years. and has objects from Persian, Mongolian and Ottoman empires. Hence you will need to spend half a day here to see everything. It’s truly an unforgettable experience. Go see for yourself.

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