Treasures of the World's Cultures Exhibition opens to the public Tuesday
WAM ABU DHABI: VIPs attended Abu Dhabi Tourism '&' Culture Authority's official opening of Treasures of the World's Cultures, an exhibition in collaboration with the British Museum, featuring regional loans from Al Ain National Museum and Sharjah Archeology Museum, today.
The exhibition which opened under the Under the patronage of His Highness General Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces tells the story of more than two million years of human life through some of the world's most magnificent objects at the Saadiyat Cultural District.
From paintings that reflect the rich and varied traditions of Islamic art and tools made in East Africa during the Old Stone Age to masterpieces from Renaissance Europe, the exhibition which will run from 18 April until 17 July, explores the varied interpretations of �treasure'. Featuring examples of �buried treasure' and recent artworks from around the world, the exhibition connects historical and modern cultural perspectives through one visual experience.
"This exhibition shares an underlying theme with Abu Dhabi's cultural ambitions as both embody the desire to safekeep treasures of the past, for the present and the future. This guardianship of ambitious cultural undertakings will also be reflected in the world-class institutions planned for Saadiyat including the Zayed National Museum, Louvre Abu Dhabi and Guggenheim Abu Dhabi," said HE Sheikh Sultan bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Chairman, Abu Dhabi Tourism '&' Culture Authority.
Treasures of the World's Cultures is the second of a series of exhibitions in the lead up to the opening of the Zayed National Museum and follows last year's Splendours of Mesopotamia, also staged in collaboration with the British Museum, which gave prominence to the Middle East as the birth place of civilization and the deep history of the region. Treasures of the World's Cultures leads visitors to the broad horizon of world heritage through more than 250 exceptional objects, highlighting many universal themes that will also be explored in the Zayed National Museum, where galleries will tell the story of the region's history and the unification of the United Arab Emirates through the life of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, father of the nation and its continual source of inspiration.
The exhibition starts with the beginning of human existence, in Africa, at a time when survival, success, status and relationships first began to depend on material things. Objects began to have meanings and significance beyond their usefulness and beautiful things started to inspire and define people. The importance of material culture in global societies is witnessed in the succeeding galleries as visitors go on a journey through the Middle East, Europe, Asia, Oceania, and the Americas. The exhibition culminates with objects from the Modern World.
As with all exhibitions organised in the Saadiyat Cultural District, Treasures of the World's Cultures features a diverse public programme including several lectures by internationally renowned speakers such as Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, Manal Ataya, Director General, Sharjah Museums Department and Dr. Walid Yasin, Manager of Archaeology, Abu Dhabi Tourism '&' Culture Authority. More than 20 workshops that are free of charge for children, teens, adults (including educators and corporate organisations) offer a range of art making exercises or opportunities to engage with the exhibition. On the 6 June, Artscape of World Cultures will include live music, dance, workshops, poetry and art, drawing inspiration from the rich themes and objects in the exhibition to celebrate human achievement and cultural expression from around the world.
Treasures of the World's Cultures will be the fifth exhibition held at Manarat Al Saadiyat which opened in 2009 and has welcomed approximately 200,000 visitors to date. The exhibition will be open from 10am to 8pm daily.