“Mvsevm - Seat of the Mvse”

May 26, 2012 to September 20, 2012 - 12:00 to 16:00

Birzeit University Museum presents the exhibition “Mvsevm - Seat of the Mvse”, the second exhibition and new venture in the Beyond Æsthetics programme. The exhibition addresses an innovative and alternative approach to handling the ethnographic collections owned by the Museum. The Museum’s collections consist of 104 traditional costume and 1491 amulets and talismans from the collection of Tawfiq Kanaan.

The Museum presents a new exhibition every year where a question is posed concerning the Museum’s acquisitions. The process thus makes room for curating the exhibition to be a subject for study, research and renovated production of knowledge, in addition to tackling questions concerning the cultural and visual heritage, the museum, the audience and cultural industry.  

This year’s exhibition “Museum- Seat of the Muse” tackles the relation between the Museum’s acquisitions and the Museum as a space, its work mechanisms and its interaction with the audience. It also tackles questions pertaining to the absence of the artisan as a unique traditional vocation that produced this heritage. It sheds light on the artisan as a contemporary designer with unique presence who employs this inheritance as a source of inspiration in producing its special pieces.

During the exhibition, the curator will work with a team of designers on developing ideas and mechanisms for design and production of new outfits inspired by the acquisitions of the museum. The exhibition during this period will be in a state of constant change and dynamism to the point where the viewer will notice a new change in the display with each visit.  

This approach is in line with the vision « Beyond Æsthetics » sets for itself, that aims to introduce an alternative approach to handling the acquisitions far from promoting aesthetics in the abstract sense or even to presenting it on the basis of nostalgia and sentiment. Instead it triggers the need for study and research in order to understand the acquisitions from different perspectives to the point where acquisitions become sources of knowledge and a subject for research in every new exhibition.

The idea of the exhibition was developed by the curator Omar Youssef Ben Dina, who also curated the first series of “Beyond Æsthetics”.
This exhibition is annually funded by Bank of Palestine in cooperation with the Denmark House and The British Council.


Omar Youssef Ben Dina.
Birzeit University Museum