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Tuesday, October 19, 2021

QNL heritage library unveils nostalgic Arab cinema posters in new exhibition


For all movie geeks around Qatar: Get to know more about the history of cinema through Qatar National Library (QNL)’s new exhibition.

QNL will launch a new and unique digital exhibition that explores the rich and diverse cinematic artwork of posters throughout history in the Arab region. 

Named “Arab Cinema Posters: Art and Memory”, the exhibition will also offer an overview of the emergence of movie artwork in the Arab world. 

“We hope that film enthusiasts, as well as lovers of art and history, will enjoy our exhibition and gain a new understanding of the importance of the movement to the region,” said Maryam al-Muttawa, QNL’s head of Collection Access, Distinctive Collections. 

QNL’s latest exhibition explores the special artwork used to attract movie lovers across the MENA region. 

To dig deeper into the history of cinema and witness the change throughout the years, the exhibition will feature items from the Heritage Library’s Arab Cinema archive collection. 

 “This exhibition delves into our archive to explore Arab movie posters to offer unique insights to cinephiles. The posters in this exhibition address different themes and common issues among Arab countries, such as modernity, originality, social change and other matters related to humanitarian and national interests,” said exhibition’s curator, Walid Abdulwahed. 

The art of film posters will also be explored, highlighting the tools that were used to attract an audience in the past. 

Read also: QNL offers ‘fear and its impact on mental health’ workshop

 “Arab Cinema Posters: Art and Memory” is now open for the public and will be available for six months.

“This exciting new exhibition highlights the work of Arab poster artists who reflected the spirit and characteristics of each era through attractive pieces of art, using a blend of brilliant colors, broad-font Arabic calligraphy and graphics, all of which combined to greatly contribute to the success of these films across the Arab world,” said al-Muttawa.

“It is the first digital exhibition that we have produced, and we are proud of what we have accomplished by our team, particularly during these unprecedented times.” 

The digital exhibition also takes a look at how the region’s movie poster industry was initially transferred from the hands of a group of Greek artists in Egypt to several Egyptian pioneers, including Ragheb, Jasoor, Ahmed Fouad and others.

Through their talent, they then mastered the trade and established an essential chain of poster workshops in the Arab region.

“They show the beginnings of filmmaking in the region and provide an account of the history of cinema and its development in the Arab world, as well as an overview of the beginnings of cinema in the Gulf,” Abdulwahed added.

“We hope that many existing lovers of film and budding cinematographers will visit our digital exhibition and learn more about the fascinating world of Arab film.”

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