Affiliations: History of Art, Museums and Society
Rethinking Gulf Museology: Identity and Museums in Doha and Abu Dhabi
In the twenty-first century, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates have used oil wealth to fund the construction of an array of museums designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architects to house global collections of art. This denotes a marked shift in the Gulf’s urban development that focuses on arts infrastructure and coincides with national rebranding efforts. While superficially similar, the museological endeavors in Qatar and the United Arab Emirates are driven by distinct motivations. An analysis of the architectural vocabularies and urban characteristics of the museological development in Doha and Abu Dhabi reveal significant differences in the two ventures, challenging the traditional narrative that sees both nations following identical trajectories.
Mentor: Dr. Jennifer P. Kingsley, Program in Museums and Society