Saturday, October 29, 2016

Syria A Living History at the Aga Khan Musuem




World Premiere of Syria: A Living History
October 15, 2016–February 26, 2017



I have wanted to visit the Aga Khan Museum for a long time. It's been open for 2 years now and it's an incredible structure with nothing like it in North America.  In a area of Toronto with mostly office and industry this Museum really stand out.  I was lucky to be able to visit the Museum this week for a tour of the Syria: A Living History Exhibit and also a look through the beautiful gift shop and a dinner at Chef Mark McEwen's curated restaurant Diwan where we dined on a flavourful array of Syrian dishes.   

Some of the dishes sampled were:

Lamb meatballs braised with sour cherry sauce, Fattoush salad, RedLentil soup, Pickled turnips and labneh, "Tarator" salmon crusted in walnuts and topped with pomegranate seeds, Lahana salad with cabbage and beets and a vegetarian filled phyllo pastry.


The exhibition brings together over 5,000 years of art highlighting the contributions that the diverse cultures within Syria — Mesopotamian, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Persian, Ottoman, and Arab — have made to world heritage. A collaboration of museums and private collections in Europe, North America, and the Middle East with 48 artifacts displayed.

 Exhibition highlights include:


·       *   An eye idol from Tell Brak, Syria, carved around 3,200 BCE;
·       *   A stele with a depiction of a prayer from Tell Halaf, Syria, (10th–9th centuries BCE), still bearing the   marks of a Second World War bombing raid in Berlin, Germany;
·       *  Contemporary works by Elias Zayat (b. 1935) and Fateh Moudarres (1922–99) that merge personal   experiences with reflections on modern-day Syria.

Lion’s Head
Historic Syria, 9th8th centuries BCE
Ivory, carved
With permission of the Royal Ontario Museum © ROM.

Additional programming highlights include:

·       An illuminating symposium on Syria’s art and architecture (October 29, October 30)
     Co-organized with Professor Nasser Rabbat, Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture, MIT
·       Lectures with leading scholars (November 10, November 13) Featuring Dr. Ross Burns, historian and author of Monuments of Syria and Damascus – A History, and Jens Hanssen, Professor of Arab Civilization, University of Toronto
·       Showcase performances with Syrian artists (October 29, November 26, November 27, December 11)
With artists such as vocalist Lubana Al Quntar (Syria’s first opera singer), composer Kinan Azmeh, and visual artist Kevork Mourad

Lion’s Head

Historic Syria, 9th8th centuries BCE
Ivory, carved
With permission of the Royal Ontario Museum © ROM.

   


       Backgammon/Chess Box
    Syria, 19th century

Wood, wood veneers, bone, and mother-of-pearl; inlaid
With permission of the Royal Ontario Museum © ROM.



The Aga Khan Museum in Toronto, Canada, has been established and developed by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC), which is an agency of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN). The Museum’s mission is to foster a greater understanding and appreciation of the contribution that Muslim civilizations have made to world heritage while often reflecting, through both its permanent and temporary exhibitions, how cultures connect with one another. Designed by architect Fumihiko Maki, the Museum shares a 6.8-hectare site with the Ismaili Centre, Toronto, which was designed by architect Charles Correa. The surrounding park was designed by landscape architect Vladimir Djurovic.

HOURS:
Monday: Closed
(except holiday Mondays)
Tuesday: 10 am–6 pm
Wednesday: 10 am–8 pm
Thursday–Sunday: 10 am–6 pm

COST:
General Admission*
Friends: Free
Adults: $20
Seniors (65+): $15
Students:* $12
Children & Youth (6–13): $10
Family Package:* $50

LOCATION:
The Aga Khan Museum is located at
77 Wynford Drive, close to Don Mills
Road and Eglinton Avenue East in
Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Please visit
agakhanmuseum.org for directions,
parking information, and TTC routes.
General Information:
416.646.4677

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