Qatar National Museum Architectural Desert Rose |

Doha – In March 2019, the State of Qatar opened its National Museum, an event that attracted great attention from those interested in heritage, history and culture, but the most prominent scene in this event is the architectural design of the museum designed by the famous French Jean was implemented. New skin

And this design, which came in the form of the desert rose or the desert flower, and in the local dialect, “sand crap”, looked very interesting.

Some people think of its name as a plant, but it is a rose that does not smell or have thorns. Rather, it is a rock formation formed from limestone that appears below the surface of the earth and indicates the availability of groundwater.

Due to its rarity and importance, the “Desert Rose” became one of the most prominent icons expressing the Gulf and Qatari heritage, and it was so proud that it was taken as the basis for the design of the National Museum, which is the largest in Qatar.

The desert rose is one of the non-fossil formations, which is the general name for the group of minerals found under the desert sands and oxides of minerals, forming a geological crystalline formation consisting of gypsum, barite and sand grains.

This formation is the result of the evaporation of water from shallow salt sabkhas that extend over the gypsum mineral to form rose-like shapes.

These rocks do not form overnight, but instead take a long time to form, spanning decades and perhaps centuries.

Author Abdullah bin Lahdan Al-Mohannadi said in a tweet that “the desert flower in Qatar, or Qahof, as it is called locally, adorns the desert of Qatar and is considered a natural heritage.”

Al-Mohannadi added, “Desert Rose is located in specific areas, and due to the random traffic of cars, it was destroyed by almost 90 percent.”

He stated that the rest of them could be preserved by fencing their territories and making tourist and scientific visits to them.

Evidence from history

The desert rose is sold in the local heritage markets in Qatar, and visitors to the country are eager to acquire it as an ornament for indoor decoration, as it is installed on engraved forms.

“The desert rose, with its exotic nature, has become the focus of everyone’s interest when they come to Qatar, especially after the opening of the Qatar National Museum, which was inspired by its design,” says Fahad Al-Qubati, a plasterer at Souq Waqif in Doha.

He added, “The tourist and the foreign visitor when he comes to the market, the first thing he looks for is this rose, which he is curious to see and buy.”

And he added: “The desert rose has become essential for those who want to give a gift from Qatar to their friends … and we make models and envelopes for this rose to preserve it and facilitate its acquisition.”

The Qatar National Museum overlooks the Doha Corniche, and the designer Jean Nouvel took care to build the museum’s structure to reflect the cultural and civilizational heritage of Qatari geography through the phenomenon of the “desert rose” with its crystal forms that resemble small architectural details appear, emerging from the ground and formed by the meeting of winds with salt water and sand. .

The museum came in the form of large interlocking disks of different diameters and curves. Some of them are vertical, supporting the building, and some are horizontal, resting on the other disks. In their entirety, they form what looks like a necklace that surrounds the building. historic palace of Sheikh Abdullah bin Jassim Al Thani.

Disks based on each other
Disks based on each other

The ceiling consists of 76,000 plates, and these plates are formed in more than 3,600 different shapes and sizes, to express the meaning of inclusion at the general level, while at the same time architectural, spatial and sensory experiences at the individual level supply.

Architect Jean Nouvel said, “I was inspired by the desert rose, a futuristic idea, which can be considered somewhat fanciful. This building embodies the latest technology just like Qatar. A desert rose is an architectural masterpiece created by nature was formed by wind, sea spray and grains of sand thousands of years ago. It is an inspiring natural architecture.” .

In total, the galleries form a kind of ring that surrounds and encompasses the heart of the Qatar National Museum represented by the restored Sheikh Abdullah Palace. In the middle of the galleries is a central courtyard (yard) which is an outdoor gathering space during cultural events. The concrete surface covering of the museum harmonizes with the Qatari desert. It takes on a sandy color, making the building look like a plant emerging from the earth and merging with it, and the museum’s protruding discs cast a shadow that protects visitors from the heat of the sun when they step outside, while at the same time providing a cover for those inside to protect them from the heat, and similar to the exterior design, The interior design takes the form of interlocking discs in neutral or monochromatic colors, the floors take a sandy color, and the “vertical” walls are painted with traditional stucco and lime plaster, and the interior spaces vary considerably in size, giving each showroom a special character that differs from the others. is a kind of adventure and reinforces the element of surprise in the visitor’s journey within the museum.

The museum is surrounded by a public garden that covers an area of ​​112,000 square meters. This amazing space reflects the natural and botanical diversity of Qatar. It includes interactive educational spaces that welcome families, walking paths, a lake, and spread over drought-resistant Qatari plants. Important aspects of life in Qatar are similar to what they learn in the museum.

The museum offers researchers and students a research centre, modern and specialized research laboratories, as well as easy access to digital archives.

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