We all know that Qatar has an ambitious plan that aims to make itself a world-class cultural destination, notably in modern and contemporary art.
In line with this, the Qatar Museums' (QM) Public Art Department constantly oversees the installation of artwork by renowned artists in the public realm in Qatar.
QM Chairperson Sheikha Al Mayassa Bint Hamad Al Thani once said: “Through displaying various forms of art in public space, we aim to inspire local talent and establish an organic connection between art and the local community.”
To make things more interesting, we've decided to put up a special QM-related article featuring five of the lesser-known public art installations that can be found in the State of Qatar!
Embedded in the symbolical meaning of the number seven in Islamic culture, this sky-high structure prominently located in the Musical of Islamic Art is the freshman public masterpiece of American sculptor Richard Serra who is known worldwide for his large-scale installations in public space.
If you're ever wondering why it's called '7', well it's due to the fact that the 24-meter high monument is made up of seven steel plates. Centred in the voluptuous landscape rounded by the sea, Serra's iconic brainchild is without a doubt a symmetrical sight to behold from the inside out.
Brought to Qatar by British artist Sarah Lucas, this monument of an actual horse pulling a cart caring two squash is made of bronze and represents the artist's interest in working with various cultural contexts.
Located in the Aspire Park for a specific reason, Sarah said that Perceval—which name came from King Arthur's legendary Knights of the Round Table—is a subject matter that reflects her fondness for re-examining everyday objects in unusual contexts.
Previously exhibited in New York, Perceval is Sarah’s only piece of public art. Also, at once a homage to British culture, the piece is a replica of an ornament that adorns many mantelpieces in the UK.
With a direct English translation that says "Searching for Light IV," this stunning piece of art was unveiled by the Public Art Commission inside the awe-inspiring Qatar University not too long ago.
The abstract piece integrates into itself the fundamental concepts inside the artist’s labour. And as it's erected inside a university campus, Buscando La Luz 4 encourages a new dimension of thought-provoking conversations among students, professors, and spectators of QU.
A series of bronze sculptures by master sculptor Damian Hirst, it took approximately 8 years to complete these fourteen pieces of visual wonder which range in height.
Damian is known for focusing on the omnipresent theme of death, hence the public art piece's subject which was based on the idea to create something monumental, whilst essentially human, in order to articulate the processes of human birth and decay, according to him.
The installation is located in front of the Sidra Medical and Research Center, a new academic medical facility specialising in patient care for women and children in Qatar. The figures range in height from 4.8 metres to 10.7 metres and weigh between 9 and 28 tonnes each.
Found approximately 60 kilometres off Doha, Richard Serra's second installation in the Middle East and in the State of Qatar is a little different from '7' as this one's actually a land art/sculptural intervention, according to the artist himself.
East-West/West-East spans over a kilometre in length, and crosses the peninsula of the Brouq Nature Reserve connecting the waters of the Gulf. It consists of four steel plates measured by their relation to the topography. The plates, which rise to 14.7 meters and 16.7 meters above the ground, are level to each other; they are also level to the gypsum plateaus on either side. Despite the great distance that the plates span, all four can be seen and explored from either end of the sculpture.
To check out more public art installations under QM, make sure to visit their website and social media links below!
What's your favourite public piece of art in Qatar? Drop us a line in the comments and also, don't forget to like and share this article—it keeps us going!
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