Sharjah Museums Department concludes its celebrations of International Museum Day

Press release
Published May 25th, 2014 - 09:42 GMT

The Sharjah Museums Department (SMD) has concluded its celebration of International Museum Day closing the curtain on the unique exhibition “Museum Collections Make Connections” and its accompanying events. 

The mobile exhibition, which took place at the Arabian Centre, featured valued displays and paintings, which chronicle the deep-rooted connections and the history of travel and trade between the East and the West. 

"Museum Collections Make Connections" saw a huge turnout of families, children and shoppers who demonstrated their appreciation for SMD’s experience and highly praised its ongoing efforts in making museum objects accessible to a wider audience and helping them explore interesting facts about the world of travel through the selected museum objects. 

On display were Orientalists' paintings portraying the vibrant markets in North Africa which were made by European artists interested in the East during the 19th century, when the East, with its myth and reality, was a source of inspiration for travellers and artists. 

During the 19th century, Orientalist artists enriched their artistic experience through their journeys to the East and their artworks enriched and highlighted the Arab region by putting a spotlight on tourism focused on archaeological sites, natural scenery, and daily life.

The museum objects were showcased at the special exhibition, which was organised by SMD from 18-24 May in three locations, including The Higher Colleges of Technology, Sahara Centre in Sharjah and Arabian Centre in Dubai.

The exhibition featured exquisite artefacts and paintings on loan from 8 Sharjah Museums, including: Sharjah Archaeology Museum, Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilisation, Sharjah Art Museum, Sharjah Heritage Museum, Sharjah Maritime Museum, Sharjah Classic Cars Museum, Al Mahatta Museum, and Sharjah Science Museum.

The special exhibition has strengthened SMD's role in implementing its new strategies aimed at taking artefacts and collections beyond the museums’ halls, to make them accessible and relevant to the public in high-traffic areas and to introduce the public to the 16 SMD museums which span a range of disciplines, including history, science, heritage, art, and the deeply entrenched Arab and Islamic culture of the UAE.

On the fringe of "Museum Collections Make Connections", a series of educational workshops focusing on arts, crafts, and UAE heritage were conducted to increase community awareness about Emirati folklore and heritage.

SMD organised the first workshop titled “Decorate your Notebook” at the Sharjah Heritage Museum, which highlighted the local heritage, such as traditional textile-inspired designs and beautiful costumes, that are part of the UAE's rich heritage.

While the second science-themed workshop titled, “The Astrolabe” highlighted ground-breaking discoveries by Arab and Muslim astronomers and their role in the evolution of science and various sources of knowledge.

The third workshop, which was held at the Sharjah Art Museum, focused on developing the aesthetic skills and values of the attendees by teaching them how to draw a 3D image of the earth’s landscape including geographic details such as mountains, trees and man-made landmarks in a unique artistic manner. 

Background Information

Sharjah Museums Department

The Sharjah Museums Authority - SMA (Sharjah Museums Department – SMD previously) was established in 2006 by His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, as an independent government department. Sharjah Museums Authority includes 15 museums covering Islamic art and culture, archaeology, heritage, science, marine life, Sharjah history and the region.

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