HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), officially dedicated The Media Majlis at Northwestern University in Qatar, a unique and interactive museum nestled in the heart of one of the largest and most advanced media schools in the world.

Sheikha MozaThe colourful ceremony was also attended by HE Sheikha Hind bint Hamad Al Thani, Vice Chairperson and CEO of Qatar Foundation, alongside dignitaries, Northwestern officials, and media professionals.

Speaking at the dedication ceremony, HE Sheikha Hind said The Media Majlis demonstrates how narratives exist to be explored and challenged rather than simply accepted; and how connecting with different voices, standpoints, and ideas extends the boundaries of understanding, nourishes critical and original thought, and enriches lives.

HH Sheikha Moza and HE Sheikha Hind toured the first exhibition, ‘Arab Identities, images in film’, which explores over a century’s worth of film history and how it has shaped and been shaped by notions of Arab identities.

The Media Majlis: First Museum of its Kind

The Media Majlis is the first museum of its kind in the region and the first university museum in Qatar. It is an active and empowering space where people can engage with the exhibition’s content and programmes which focus on communication, journalism, and media in the Arab world; as well as contribute to the global conversation on the continually changing landscape of media.

Dean Everette E Dennis said The Media Majlis underscores the importance of media in society, highlighting the earlier and most basic forms of communication to the most modern, and drawing on images and materials from local sources and global collections.

With focus on the Arab world, the museum will host two exhibitions each year addressing major themes and ideas that are pertinent to the region. The museum features extensive digital-capacity creating exhibitions where visitors can participate through interactive commentary and engagement, along with digital content shared using a number of different technologies, objects and physical content feature to explore stories from multiple perspectives.

Northwestern University President Morton Schapiro said they wouldn’t be here without the ambition and generosity of Qatar Foundation.

Who best to tell the story of media and journalism and communications in an Arab context than a museum located here in Northwestern University in Qatar. The Media Majlis demonstrates Northwestern’s commitment to education and research and its long-standing foothold in the Middle East.’

Arab Identities, images in film

The museum’s first exhibition, Arab Identities, images in film, is open until 1 June  and will reopen in August and run until December. With sections from more than 60 films and hundreds of images, some dating back to the 1880s, with posters from the early 1990s, visitors can bring nuance to the deep and complicated meanings of identity, as well as ideas and connections that influence people’s understanding of the theme.

Museum Director Pamela Erskine-Loftus said their ethos is ‘there is always another side’.

To learn more about the museum and its programmes, visit their website at mediamajlis.northwestern.edu/en.