Empty opening for Palestinian Museum

Thursday, May 19, 2016
Empty opening for Palestinian Museum

The Palestinian Museum opened its doors on May 19th, presenting the crowds with empty rooms. The $24 million project was meant to open with the exhibition “Never Part”, curated by former director Jack Persekian.

Empty opening for Palestinian Museum

The Palestinian Museum opened its doors on May 19th, presenting the crowds with empty rooms. The $24 million project was meant to open with the exhibition “Never Part”, curated by former director Jack Persekian. The exhibition, whose objective was to feature illustrative artifacts from the lives of Palestinian refugees, was scrapped following the ouster of Persekian. The museum’s new director, Mahmoud Hawari, was appointed a mere two weeks ago.

The Palestinian Museum’s inaugural event drew together the country’s top political and artistic figures to experience the finalized space, which stands on a 40,000 square meter plot atop a hill. The building itself cannot possible be overlooked, neither for its physical attributes, nor for its sustainability.  

The combination of state of the art surveillance with a sustainability system, places the building alongside that of other major museums and institutions.

Nonetheless, controversy hounds the opening, whose first proper exhibition could very well be a year away. Until then, several satellite shows in other locations will be shown, such as the upcoming show in Beirut, Lebanon, called “At the Seams: A Political History of Palestinian Embroidery.” 

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Museo Jumex (a private art collection based in Mexico City, Mexico) / David Chipperfield. Image © Simon Menges

Museo Jumex (a private art collection based in Mexico City, Mexico) / David Chipperfield. Image © Simon Menges

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