Museum in the Middle East (01/01/2017)

2A Magazine #13, Ahmad Zohadi, Editorial


Museum in the Middle East

Based in Dubai, 2A Architecture and Art magazine is emerging as the leading architectural magazine of the region. As Editor-in-Chief I have attempted to identify a specific architectural theme for each issue of the magazine in order to acknowledge the realities of architecture & art that are both contemporaneous and relevant to the Middle East, yet within a global context.

In order to expand the range of topics, while attempting an understanding of current trends and following-up readers’ requests for this season of 2A magazine, I have defined the current edition’s theme as Architecture & Art, Research into Museums of the Middle East. As a consequence, guest editors have been invited to participate in this process.

In this context, a group of notable individuals comprising architects and art researchers, in addition to leading design firms, have contributed concepts, articles and projects.

Readers will be interested to note that 2A will publish some of the articles at the website www.2amagazine.com.

In fact, I have tried to lead the magazine by developing its role as the significant regional medium for the introduction of invaluable architectural projects and various outstanding developments throughout the Middle East and further afield. Consequently the themes of the five next editions of 2A magazine will be Architecture & Women, Architecture & Religion; Architecture: for Poorer, for Richer; Architecture & Regionalism; Architecture & the Landscape.

Since inviting various professional international architects as members of the 2A advisory board, in order to share ideas and knowledge with regard to these forthcoming thematic issues, I am further convinced that such a combination of talents and subject matter will continue to enhance the magazine’s reputation on a global scale.

The five forthcoming editions of 2A magazine will therefore be the remit of an advisory board amongst whose members are architectural professors, including heads of departments and deans of schools from important universities in the world. My personal hope is centred around a new dialogue for the East & West, brought together through the aforementioned specific themes in architecture.

Concerning the current edition, a simple question can be asked:

What is the relationship between Architecture and Museums?

From my point of view, all museums are places of significance that retain and display invaluable human resources. Such places are essentially educational and interpret civilizations through the concept of culture while communicating with the individual through the medium of exhibitions. Since the nineteenth century people have been drawn to such environments.

Although the phenomenon of the museum is thus relatively new, it is interesting to note that the roots of the word originate from ancient Greece. The word itself embodies a sense of place, and hence this place should be related to the shape and form of architecture.

Within these terms, most features of a museum should encompass a commitment to artistic endeavor, in addition to demonstrating a celebration of architecture. It is the latter through the form of the building which largely determines any attraction for visitors to the museum.

In order to articulate this last statement an image (Alighapoo Isfahan) used to underpin the notion of a connection between architecture through photography and what comprise successful museums.