Dubai: The UAE Ministry of Culture and the Aga Khan Museum have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to formalise their collaboration. The idea for the collaboration came about in the backdrop of the Al-Burda Grant Programme, to advance their shared and individual missions.
Effective December 19, 2023, until December 18, 2026, the MOU will enrich educational and artistic initiatives for young professionals, intellectuals, art practitioners, and students through collaboration, and empower opportunities for learning and artistic creativity through training and mentorship.
Pluralism, inclusivity, diversity
Fuelled by a shared mandate of pluralism, inclusivity, and diversity, the collaboration aims to present a diverse range of offerings at the museums and cultural institutions in the United Arab Emirates and Museum in Toronto for young curators, artists, art practitioners, and museologists.
The innovative opportunities will include: annual residencies for young, emerging art and performing art practitioners; educational opportunities, such as learning initiatives and educational workshops for Emirati high school post-secondary students and young professionals focused on intercultural dialogue, local museology, museum education, and Islamic art.
It also covers professional internships and fellowships for young Emirati curators and museum professionals in the areas of curation, conservation, museum education, collection management, and academic research.
Sheikh Salem bin Khalid Al Qassimi, Minister of Culture of the UAE, said: “Guided by the ambitious vision of our wise leadership, the Ministry of Culture in the United Arab Emirates is committed to creating opportunities for professionals and intellectuals across the country– to sharpen their skills, expand their knowledge, and embrace and develop their creative ideas.
“The Ministry has launched a myriad initiatives and programmes to that very end, while also working to grow and strengthen our network of partnerships to drive progress towards these strategic objectives.”
“This agreement we are proud to be signing with the prestigious Aga Khan Museum brings us a significant step forward in that direction, while also presenting us with a prominent platform to share our own expertise and insight into various cultural sectors with world-renowned and likeminded institutions,” Sheikh Al Qassimi added.
“This groundbreaking MOU is built on a joint commitment to showcase the creativity and contributions of Muslim cultures and foster intercultural learning, dialogue, and capacity building through the arts,” said Dr. Ulrike Al-Khamis, Director and CEO of the Aga Khan Museum.
“We are deeply honoured by the trust invested in our Museum with this partnership, and we very much look forward to working with our Emirati colleagues.”
The collaboration was celebrated at a ceremonial signing of the MOU by Mubarak Al Nakhi, Undersecretary of the UAE Ministry of Culture and Dr Ulrike Al-Khamis, Director and CEO of Aga Khan Museum, Toronto, on the evening of December 19, 2023, at the Louvre, Abu Dhabi in the presence of Sheikh Salem bin Khalid Al Qassimi, Minister of Culture of the United Arab Emirates and Professor Emeritus Dr. Thomas L. Lentz, Vice Chairman of Aga Khan Museum.
The Al Burda Award 2023 ceremony was attended by Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the United Arab Emirates, Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and high profile dignitaries from the region and UAE.