The newest and most challenging Virtual Museum and Virtual Exhibition project of MWNF went live after three years of preparation.
Today we are all called upon to look at our past as a shared heritage, which will give us inspiration for a joint future only if interpreted collectively, taking into consideration the perspectives of all concerned.
Sharing History Virtual Museum and Virtual Exhibitions explore the relations between the Arab and Ottoman world and Europe between 1815 and 1918,
a complex and highly sensitive period that saw the rise of industrialisation and witnessed European colonial dominance in North Africa and the Middle East until the end of World War I. A hundred years of shared history that still determines our relations today.
is the result of a joint effort of partners from 22 countries, to make the discovery of shared history both enjoyable and educational.
Sharing History is building bridges through cultural history and helps make peace possible through knowledge and understanding.
Cultural experts from the Arab world, Turkey and Europe came together to analyse the background and legacy of key moments in their shared histories and to look at them from their respective perspectives. Two years of collaborative research, documentation and curatorial work made it possible to explore, for the first time with a truly shared approach, a period of history that is crucial to understanding the present and to reveal it through its artistic and cultural legacy.
A variety of options to discover Arab and Ottoman – European relations in the period under survey:
Ten themed Exhibitions focus on areas of great relevance for interaction. Each exhibition displays a fantastic variety of material from all participating countries such as documents, historic photographs, works of art, archaeological items, objects relating to daily life and images of monuments. Texts offer different levels of information, according to the specific interest of the reader.
A searchable Database provides information on about 3,000 items including those on display in the Exhibitions.
In Collections users are able to view the material contributed by each country or to see the material available in the Database for each of the Exhibition themes.
A themed Timeline and a Historical Profile of all participating countries offer further context.
The Historical Background provides information on the three specific perspectives of the period: Arab, Ottoman and European.
My Collection enables registered users to create personalised collections, and My Exhibition lets them “curate” their own exhibitions.
Partners gives further information about the institutions involved.
Sharing History continues MWNF’s tradition of inaugurating themes of great relevance and impact
. Islamic Art in the Mediterranean
led the way in 1994 as the first project focusing on Islamic art and architecture, followed by the Virtual Museum Discover Islamic Art
Museum With No Frontiers has 20 years of experience in “rewriting history” beyond narrow nationalist agendas
and promoting an entirely new, inclusive vision of history that highlights and celebrates the interconnections, cross-fertilisations, exchanges and cooperation between cultures in areas as diverse as archaeology, art and culture, economy and social life. Against the backdrop of contemporary global challenges and conflicts, MWNF projects demonstrate the far-reaching potential of cultural heritage in building intercultural bridges in the name of peace. The format of online museums and online exhibitions
allows participants equal visibility and equal opportunity to benefit from the results.
is set up under the umbrella of the partnership between MWNF and the League of Arab States
, which promotes awareness about the Arab world’s history and cultural legacy. Its realisation was self-financed by the partner institutions; for specific activities the project relied on the support of two strategic sponsors (Sharjah Museums Department and Yaşar University Izmir) and on contributions from the Austrian ministries for Foreign Affairs, Education and Culture.
MWNF, April 2015