This exhibition is the fruition of the work of a huge range of individuals: archaeologists, conservators, architects, historians and curators.
As well as creating a new space for learning at Qasr al Muwaiji, one of the project’s primary aims is the fort’s preservation. This is the most recent phase in a series of restorations that have taken place at Qasr al Muwaiji since the 1970s. And even before this, the fort was constantly repaired and renewed: the climate in Al Ain – fluctuating between intense heat and rare but heavy rainfall – means that the mud walls needed regular maintenance throughout its century-long history.
It was important that the previous work – which has become an intrinsic part of the fort’s fabric and history– was respected. The conservation team employed traditional methods and materials to renew Qasr al Muwaiji’s structure, and leaving as much as possible in place.
Alongside the conservation, archaeologists carried out extensive excavations at Al Muwaiji. They unearthed traces of agricultural activity at the oasis from the 18th century as well as evidence for different phases of the fort’s construction. Archaeologists will continue to work at Al Muwaiji, discovering new material and building on our understanding of the oasis and the fort.
The exhibition space itself was designed by internationally renowned architects Machado and Silvetti Associates. Its elegant simplicity complements the fort’s traditional structure and the surrounding landscape.
This diverse team of specialists has worked together to create a distinctive exhibition at Qasr al Muwaiji: respecting its past and safeguarding it for the future.