The Korea Herald


Qatar, Venice forge collaboration, resume direct flights

By Park Yuna

Published : June 10, 2024 - 17:56

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Visitors head to Visitors head to "Your Ghosts Are Mine, Expanded Cinemas, Amplified Voices" at ACP-Palazzo Franchetti, on Thursday in Venice, Italy. (Park Yuna/The Korea Herald)

VENICE, Italy -- Qatar Museums and the municipality of Venice have agreed to strengthen collaboration in cultural and socioeconomic fields during the Venice Biennale 2024, where Qatar Museums unveiled its first major exhibition in the floating city.

The protocol of cooperation between the two entities was announced Friday, coinciding with the 60th Venice Biennale that opened April 20 and runs through Nov. 24 under the theme of "Foreigners Everywhere."

Qatar Museums, the country's pivotal cultural institute, is the organizer of the exhibition "Your Ghosts Are Mine, Expanded Cinemas, Amplified Voices" at ACP-Palazzo Franchetti that features more than 40 film or video works that explore space and time of the Arab world, Africa and South Asia.

The Qatari institute is a headline sponsor for the global art conference “Art for Tomorrow,” which was held in Venice from Wednesday to Friday by the Democracy & Culture Foundation, bringing together artists, architects, film directors and experts from across the world to explore the impact of art.

The protocol also coincides with Qatar Airways’ announcement it will resume direct flights between Venice and Doha, the capital city of Qatar, starting Wednesday.

“This year, as we use Venice as a cultural backdrop, we are happy to continue to explore closer relationships between our two cities and our nations as a whole. We look forward to welcoming Venetians to Qatar, and invite Qataris to visit Venice’s cultural offerings,” said Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, chairperson of Qatar Museums.

Qatar Museums and Venice will mutually encourage business investment – particularly in the fields of art, preservation, sports and entertainment, according to the protocol of cooperation. The activities of cultural cooperation will include the development of exhibitions and seminars exploring historic links between Italian and Islamic art and architecture.

National Museum of Qatar, designed by Jean Nouvel (Iwan Baan) National Museum of Qatar, designed by Jean Nouvel (Iwan Baan)

According to Qatar Museums, the agreement also seeks cooperation in protecting cultural heritage and scholarly collaborations such as by producing art publications and co-organizing research visits by librarians, archivists and historians.

Venice was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987 and has hosted the Venice Biennale since 1895. The event takes place every year, featuring art and architecture in turn.

"The city of Venice continues to bring vitality and contemporary dynamism to its historic role as a meeting place for the cultures and peoples of the world," said Venice Mayor Luigi Brugnaro. "We welcome the collaboration with Qatar Museums, one of the main institutions active in the cultural field, precisely on the days in which the direct flight connection from Venice to Doha will resume."

The protocol of collaboration will be effective for five years through the end of 2029 and can be extended by mutual agreement, according to Qatar Museums.

Artworks on loan from Qatar Museums are currently on view at the main exhibition of the Biennale, which includes objects from Mathaf’s collection of works by major Arab modern artists and in the "Worlds of Marco Polo" exhibition at the Doge’s Palace, which includes objects from the Museums of Islamic Art.

Meanwhile, Qatar Museums sponsored the "Kengo Kuma: Onomatopoeia Architecture" exhibition at the ACP-Palazzo Franchetti during the Venice Biennale 2023.