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Museums - legacy of the past in the present
May 18, 2014, 9:10 am

Museums are the barometer of civilisation and human legacy of nations, representing a link between the past and the future and sending out an accumulation of knowledge to the masses, generation after generation.

As the International Council of Museums (ICOM) marks International Museum Day on May 18, Kuwait follows suit, in the aim of encouraging more people to visit museums due to their role in society.

The northeastern Gulf state has been a firm advocate of the importance of these cultural hubs within the community and has launched a number of museums during its modern post-oil discovery era.

The first of these is the National Museum of Kuwait, which opened its doors to the public in 1957. The museum has three main sections - the first dealing with local history, the second, Islamic history and the third, a planetarium.

In 1972, the Museum of Science was inaugurated, aiming to shed light on the desert environment, space and science, and natural history.
Tareq Rajab, in 1980, showcased his personal collection of "approximately 10 thousand" antiquities from various civilisations around the world, including calligraphy, textiles, costumes, jewellry, art and musical instruments.

Some ten years after the Iraqi occupation, the iconic structure of the Scientific Centre was launched, dedicated to science, space and desert and marine wildlife. The museum includes a state-of-the-art aquarium and an IMAX theatre, which features 3D films and documentaries.

Three years later, Bait Al-Othman was opened by a group of volunteers opting for the traditional Kuwaiti house of the late renowned academic Abdullah Al-Othman as its building.

The museum focuses on everything Kuwaiti. In addition to exhibiting historically significant aspects of Kuwait, like old currencies and businesses, the museum also showcases modern-day images such as the launch of the state carrier, Kuwait Airways.

Courtesy: KUNA

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