A one-of-a-kind installation in the heart of Washington, D.C., QAIC’s expanded Perfumery Museum bridges the historical and contemporary journey of scent
September 1 – December 8, 2023
WASHINGTON, Aug. 25, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — The Qatar America Institute for Culture (QAIC) is pleased to present a major expansion of its unique Perfumery Museum. Refreshing the existing installation first opened in 2021, the museum takes visitors on a historical and contemporary journey through the senses.
Bridging Qatari, Arab and global cultures, the museum introduces visitors to the history and importance of scent to the Middle East, from the origins of the distillation process to the exchange of raw materials and oils along trade routes, connecting East to West. Objects such as an Alembic Distiller, and illustrated content featuring important figures and trade routes to the development of perfume as a commodity, including Abbasid caliph Harun Al Rashid, are displayed and highlighted as part of the introductory section.
Visitors have the opportunity to learn about the science and processes behind how scents are created through both graphic displays and video content. From there, they are immersed in a hanging garden of fresh flowers that dry over time, and experience custom scents by emerging Qatari artist and designer, AlMaha Ahmed Al-Mahmoud. Al-Mahmoud’s installation, titled “The Floral Scents,” explores and challenges traditional notions of beauty through a multi-sensory display.
Incense burners imbued with an array of essential oils invite guests to learn about more than 15 aromas and raw materials indigenous to the Middle East, North Africa, and Southeast Asia which are often used in perfumes. Reflecting the notion that scents are often associated with memories of place, people and experiences, guests are invited to fill out a postcard sharing a scent-related story. Audio-visual stories by QAIC’s Honorary Trustees H.E. Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad Al Thani and Naeem Khan, among others, further illustrate the power and meaning of scent to everyday life and culture.
“Our Perfumery Museum continues to be a bit of a hidden gem since opening,” says QAIC’s Executive Director, Fatima Al-Dosari. “Our goal with the expansion is further elucidate the ties between culture and scent and celebrate this creative industry.”
The soft opening of QAIC’s Perfumery Museum will be held on Friday, September 1 from 5 to 8 PM, in partnership with the Dupont Circle Business Improvement District’s First Friday ArtWalk. The official opening will be held in conjunction with QAIC’s forthcoming Fragrance Symposium organized in collaboration with the Institute for Art and Olfaction on Saturday and Sunday, October 21 and 22, 2023. To learn more about these upcoming programs visit qataramerica.org.
The Qatar America Institute for Culture (QAIC) is a Washington, D.C.-based independent 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that creates, curates, and executes programs and research that amplify the prominence of all forms of art and culture from the United States, Qatar, and the larger Arab and Islamic worlds. To learn more about QAIC, please visit qataramerica.org.
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SOURCE Qatar America Institute for Culture (QAIC)
Originally published at https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/qatar-america-institute-for-culture-expands-aromatic-perfumery-museum-301909731.html
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