Manal Ataya, the Director General of Sharjah Museums Authority (SMA), has highlighted the significant role museums play as community spaces for dialogue and social bonding during her remarks delivered on Tuesday as part of the ‘Museum Talks’ series at Etihad Museum.
Ataya participated as a speaker in the Museum Talks panel titled “Museums in the Landscape” organized as part of a public program in partnership with Alserkal Advisory with a view to shifting the perception of the museum into a more contemporary space and reinforcing it as a site of dialogue, exchange and how the design of museums can affect community participation and sense of belonging.
For the latest headlines, follow our Google News channel online or via the app.
SMA’s Director General was invited in recognition of her ongoing efforts and position as a long-standing UAE cultural figure who has developed the museum ecosystem and audience ‘loyalization’ in the emirate of Sharjah.
In the discussion, Ataya underlined how the museum exists as, and within a socio-economic and cultural ecosystem with various partners and stakeholders to achieve knowledge sharing, inspire curiosity and creativity and overall, positively affect social change.
“The human experience in its most broad meaning is key to what museums represent and do, therefore we must ensure museum spaces and programs enhance dialogue where people can meet, reflect and share,” she said.
Ataya illustrated how contemporary museums are architecturally designed to grapple with issues concerning their surrounding communities to help bring change and development and eventually contribute to community building.
She stressed that museums help build their communities and are currently functioning more as community centers by providing access to new activities and creative thoughts.
“Museums are increasingly becoming part of the community building process thanks to their architectural design and often where they are positioned in their communities, in Sharjah for instance, the majority of our museums are situated in residential neighborhoods and are accessible by walking and are embedded within other civic spaces that people and children gather,” Ataya emphasized.
Participating alongside Ataya in the discussion that was moderated by Sumaya Dabbagh, Founder of Dabbagh Architects, were Brian Rudy, Partner, Moriyama and Teshima Architects, Mohammed Al Riffai from Moriyama and Teshima Architects.
The public program embraces an overarching strategy manifested in the idea of ‘Contemporary Histories’ where the Etihad Museum engages the contemporary voices who are shaping the notion of ‘Emiratiness’ in all its forms.
Renowned Iraqi Kurdish artist Ismail Khayat's exhibition open at Sharjah Art MuseumThe 12th edition of the annual ‘Lasting Impressions’ exhibition series featuring the works of renowned Iraqi-Kurdish artist Ismail Khayat opened on ... Art and culture
Navjot Altaf at Ishara: Art, activism, and the larger web of lifeThe exhibition titled ‘Pattern’ by celebrated Indian artist Navjot Altaf at Ishara Art Foundation in Dubai is an apt opportunity to dive into her five ... Art and culture
Sharjah Art Foundation unveils inaugural season of five performances across EmirateFollowing the creation of its new Performance Department, Sharjah Art Foundation has announced its inaugural performances program — featuring five ... Art and culture
Sharjah Art Foundation sets up performance division led by Tarek Abou El FetouhSharjah Art Foundation (SAF), has established a performance division, cementing the Foundation’s longstanding commitment to commissioning and ... Art and culture
Sharjah International Book Fair opens under the theme ‘Spread the Word’Dr. Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, opened on Tuesday, the 41st edition of the Sharjah International Book ... Art and culture
Sharjah Art Foundation names winners of Sharjah Film Platform 5 awardsThe Sharjah Art Foundation recognized outstanding films in the Experimental, Narrative and Documentary categories at the recently concluded Sharjah ... Art and culture