It is my pleasure to welcome you on behalf of my colleagues and I to the Palestinian Museum, in Palestine!
The Palestinian Museum enters in 2020 its fourth year working from our award-winning premises in Birzeit, as we were honoured to receive in 2019 the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, and in 2017 the LEED Gold certification as a sustainable building.
As a precautionary measure against the COVID-19 pandemic, we closed our doors to the public in March 2020. With our sincerest wishes for the best of health and safety to you and your loved ones, we thank you for following the Palestinian Museum’s #Museum from Home: Palestine Perseveres campaign, and for your active engagement with the recreational and educational content we provided on our social media platforms. Hoping to meet again soon and in person at the Museum in Birzeit, while we continue expanding our virtual reach towards our larger audience around the world. For the Palestinian Museum was conceived as a transnational museum able to reach its Palestinian public in the diaspora, and friends of Palestine everywhere.
The production and dissemination of emancipatory learning experiences about Palestine, its people, culture, and history are at the heart of the Palestinian Museum’s mission. A mission realized through the development of innovative knowledge-based, educational, recreational, and visual programmes; becoming of the Palestinian cause and human experience and showcased locally and internationally.
We are pleased to have developed in 2019 the Museum’s first five year program strategy, and to have already begun its implementation with focus on six areas: collections and acquisitions; exhibitions; knowledge production and research; education; public engagement; and digital media.
We were happy to welcome last year over 21,000 visitors and participants from all age groups and sectors of society to our various events. These activities took place here in Birzeit as well as at the Maghazi refugee camp, Jerusalem, Haifa, Baalbek, Khan Yunis, Amman, and Madrid. This, in addition to the 124,400 friends and followers who interact with the Museum’s social media platforms.
Our Education Programme raised in 2019 the number of our school visits to 105, while increasing its unique educational publications output and varied activities. Nearly 5,000 students and teachers participated in the programme’s events, including in workshops and summer camps.
In terms of public engagement, the Museum partnered in 2019 with 47 researchers, artists, institutions, and community groups on a variety of events such as exhibitions, lectures, symposia, virtual reality shows, workshops, concerts and open days for children and families.
We are eager for you to accompany us in the coming days and months on the exciting activities we have ahead: We hope you will watch the sunset from our garden and enjoy its diverse flora and artworks. Enjoy our books and publications or stop by our cafeteria then pick up a souvenir at the Giftshop. We invite you to use the Museum’s unique paper conservation laboratory. Head to our Digital Archive website or provide us with collections to be archived to preserve Palestinian collective memory. As we hope to meet you on our Palestinian Journeys website, which publishes rich and substantiated content on the history of Palestine.
We are expanding our efforts in the coming months to include the preservation of Palestinian Intangible Cultural Heritage in our work, alongside the integration of The Sustainable Development Goals for culture. We are also upgrading our website and diversifying our internet presence, as we prepare for new exhibitions that bring Palestinian history and the Palestinian experience to life. We look forward as well to partner with international museums to tour some of our exhibitions and meet new audiences worldwide.
Thank you for your fidelity & keep visiting the Palestinian Museum!
Adila Laïdi-Hanieh, PhD
Director General of the Palestinian Museum.