The Museum of Islamic Art (MIA) has opened applications for Ektashif 2 – an annual initiative that will see eight Qatari artists join the MIA staff on a seven-day trip. This year’s trip is to Istanbul, Turkey. The trip is hosted in collaboration with the Doha Capital of Culture in the Islamic World for 2021 and the Ministry of Culture and Sports.

MIA Deputy Director and Qatar Museums Director of Learning and Outreach Salem Abdulla Al Aswad said the programme is part of an annual educational initiative.

MIA provides an opportunity for established Qatari artists to engage with like-minded creatives and learn about the unique and distinctive arts and culture of different countries. The culturally immersive trip serves as inspiration for participating artists who will go on to create artworks that contribute to Qatar’s thriving cultural landscape.

The trip will include visits to historical sites of interest such as Aya Sofia, the Blue Mosque, Rustem Pasha Mosque, Yavuz Selim Mosque, Mihrimah Sultan Mosque, Yeni Valide Mosque and Topkapi Palace. Each day of the trip will also include a workshop to see the traditional arts practised in Turkey such as Iznik ceramics, paper marbling (Ebru), Islamic illumination and drawing on glass.

Following the trip, participants will be required to produce four to five artworks inspired by their visit, which will be showcased in an exhibition at the Ministry of Culture and Sports in December 2021. In addition, participating artists will also take part in a public discussion panel, during which they will speak about their experiences during their trip.

The inaugural Ektashif trip in 2019 saw six artists travel to India.


Applications are open to Qatari nationals who are at least 18 years old and are practising artists.

To apply, artists should submit five samples of their artwork, along with their CV, passport copy, and a copy of their COVID-19 vaccination certificate. Applicants should also attach a 100-word description of themselves as an artist and how securing a place on the trip would impact their practice. Applications should be sent to [email protected] before 2 September 2021.

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