With its rich history, artefacts from across the region have long been the subject of global exhibitions —though it’s worth mentioning that their presence in certain European museums is unfortunately been down to a long history of colonization and looting.
But today, the story is taking a shift with the Arabian Peninsula’s history set to go on display right here in the region.
Set to kick off in November, the Louvre Abu Dhabi just announced their plans to host an exhibition exploring Saudi Arabia’s unique history. The show, which is entitled Roads of Arabia: Archeological Treasures of Saudi Arabia comes as part of the museum’s latest season which is dedicated to putting a spotlight on regional culture.
“The Arabian Peninsula has been a place of exchange, culture and civilisation since earliest Antiquity, and Louvre Abu Dhabi is deeply rooted in the region’s unique history and context,” said Manuel Rabaté, Director of Louvre Abu Dhabi in a statement.
Roads of Arabia will include artefacts that trace back the Saudi region’s prehistoric settlements and move through the era of maritime exploration, and the buthe caravan trading routes that connected the region with Asia, Mesopotamia and the Mediterranean. It will also showcase the early routes of hajj, which date back to the 7th century.
The exhibition is a collaborative effort between the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage and the Louvre Museum in Paris, where the show had inititally taken place in 2010. Since, the exhibition travelled all throughout Europe, North America and Asia, bringing in over 5 million viewers globally and ultimately becoming known as one of Saudi’s most renowned artistic displays.
The exhibition will also have a series of rare artifacts from the UAE, including a pearl that dates back to 5500, on display.
“This year’s edition of the exhibition will be a reflection of the rich, shared cultural heritage and deep-rooted history between the two nations.” Said H.E. Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Department of Culture and Tourism.
The exhibition is set open November 8 and run through February 16.