The ‘Night of Ideas’: Msheireb Museums and Institut Français du Qatar Host Global Design Seminar

Msheireb Museums, the new cultural destination located at Msheireb Downtown Doha, in partnership with Institut Français du Qatar, hosted the ‘Night of Ideas’ yesterday (25th January), under the theme: ‘Power to the Imagination: DOHA 2022 – PARIS 2024.’

Launched by the Institut Français in 2017, the ‘Night of Ideas’ is a global project staged simultaneously around the world, from Tokyo to Los Angeles, from Stockholm to Johannesburg, where people gather to celebrate ideas. This year, Msheireb Museums brought together design leaders at Bin Jelmood House to join 41 other cities across five continents taking part in the global innovation initiative.

The event welcomed four expert Arab and European panelists who discussed with the audience three discussion points; ‘the main challenges facing urban areas in Doha and Paris,’ ‘how major events can help shape cities,’ and lastly, ‘if public spaces can humanise cities’.

The panelists included; Ibrahim Mohamed Jaidah, Group Chief Executive Officer, Chief Architect, Arab Engineering Bureau; Dr. Ali A. Alraouf, Professor of Architecture and Urbanism, Head of Research and Development at QNMP- Doha; Pierre Alain Trévelo, Architect (DPLG – National School of Architecture–Marne-la-Vallée) and urban designer (MDesS – Harvard GSD), founder with Antoine Viger-Kohler of Paris based international architecture and urban design office TVK; and Stéphane Lecler, Deputy director of urban planning for the City of Paris.

Commenting on the event, Mr. Hafiz Ali, Director of Msheireb Museums, said: “We at Msheireb Museums are proud of hosting this global event in partnership with Institut Français du Qatar. The ‘Night of Ideas’ helped create a platform to discuss art and design issues and provide creative solutions. The evening was a tremendous success and we would like to thank everyone who took part in the dynamic and engaging debates.”

Mr. Olivier DESEEZ, Counsellor for cooperation and cultural affairs at the French Embassy, Director of the  Institut Français of Qatar, said: “The goal of the Night of Ideas (‘La Nuit des idées’) is to celebrate the stream of ideas between countries, cultures, topics and generations. Every year, the Night of Ideas gives the opportunity to discover the latest discoveries in knowledge and arts, to listen to the ones who contribute to bring more ideas to their field, and to take part in the discussion about the main issues of our times. In Doha we are celebrating the imagination displayed by urban planners in the buildup of spectacular  urban transformations in two cities,  both hosting major global  events in the coming years.“

Located within the oldest part of the capital, Msheireb Museums form an important part of Qatar’s national history and Doha’s new Msheireb Downtown Doha. The reconstructed buildings and gallery spaces allow the community to engage in the significant aspects of Qatar’s past and memories of life before the country’s rapid economic development. Designed as a safe space to converse and inspire dialogue, the hosting of the ‘Night of Ideas’ seminar is part of Msheireb Museums ongoing efforts in bringing the community together to create a positive creative space.

Msheireb Museums makes the Royal Institute of British Architects’ World’s Best New Building List 2018

Msheireb Museums, the new cultural destination located at Msheireb Downtown Doha, has been included on the prestigious Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) long list of world’s best new buildings. Sixty-two buildings from 28 countries have made the list – including Msheireb Museums – and are now in the running to win the RIBA International Prize 2018.

The RIBA International Prize 2018 will be awarded to a building which exemplifies design excellence, architectural ambition and delivers meaningful social impact – all qualities which are encapsulated in the Downtown Doha museums project, and which ensured its recognition by the leading global architectural competition. The RIBA list highlights the world’s best buildings and outstanding architectural talent in the RIBA International Awards ceremony, which takes place every two years, selecting the best architectural designs from around the world. The award is presented in eight categories, including public buildings, private offices, places of worship, houses, museums, residential buildings and designs that respond to natural disasters.

Mr. Abdulla Al Mehshadi, Chief Executive Officer of Msheireb Properties, commented on the inclusion of Msheireb Museums on the RIBA International Prize 2018 list: “We are proud of this great achievement. It reflects our ongoing commitment and the collective efforts we have made in creating the four heritage houses in the Msheireb Properties flagship project, Msheireb Downtown Doha. After years of research and architectural and engineering studies, and with the participation of institutes from around the world, we have succeeded in developing an architectural method that took insights from the past and combined them with present-day technologies and thinking, to achieve a new, distinctly Qatari architectural language.”

Al Mehshadi added: “The inclusion of Msheireb Museums within the Royal Institute of British Architects International Prize list is proof of their important status worldwide, and the unique approach that Msheireb has taken in the museums’ development and in the development of Downtown Doha as a whole.”

Msheireb Museums are located within the Msheireb Doha Downtown project, developed by Msheireb Properties. The Heritage Houses, commonly known as the Bin Jelmood House, the Company House, the Mohammed bin Jassim House and the Radwani House have transformed the Heritage Quarter at Msheireb Downtown Doha and created an important cultural destination within the development. The four courtyard houses have been converted into culturally significant museums, cultural centres and exhibition buildings. Rooted in local history, these courtyards and spaces showcase important aspects of Qatar’s history and memories of old Doha.

Msheireb Properties, Qatar’s leading real estate developer aims to enrich the lives of both individuals and communities – encouraging more sustainable and environmentally responsible behaviour, while offering a better understanding of the local and regional heritage through its unique lifestyle and environment.