Qatar Museums has announced a programme whereby a series of creative spaces will be identified and developed into artist studios around Qatar with the aim of enabling artists, designers, photographers and other creatives to produce, build communities and inspire others to create. Each location, in which studios will be made available for rent, will be carefully selected based on the needs of the surrounding community, the site’s aesthetic and potential to host an active creative hub. The first of such spaces is Bayt Al Wakra, which opened over the weekend in the historic Souq Al Wakra.
Bayt Al Wakra is a traditional home located in the Souq Al Wakra area, which itself is a coastal market constructed to mimic the traditional architecture of Qatari souqs. As a unique location for an artist’s studio, the new space can be used for a variety of creative pursuits. It features four artist studios and two multipurpose spaces available for rent, both short and long term. Other services available at the house include an art shop, security and free utilities for renters.
Khalifa Al Obaidly, Director of the Fire Station, said: “Qatar Museums has long sought to create art spaces that provide a place to explore, experience, and create around the country. We’re thrilled to announce the opening of these creative spaces under the management of the Fire Station. Designed to support the development of the art and culture scene in Qatar, the new creative spaces will offer an opportunity for artists to be inspired by the historical setting of the house, the surrounding souq and the thriving community in the area.”
Studios will be available for rent via an online application process. Artists will be able to rent studios and spaces on a monthly basis, for both short-term and long-term use. Spaces can be rented indoors and outdoors at a day rate, as well.
Fire Station is known for its initiatives which champion young local talent including its famed nine-month residency programme, where artists are given studio space in one of the five floors of the building. The space also hosts a residency in Paris and New York for Qatari artists, held in partnership with Cité internationale des Arts Paris, France and the International Studio & Curatorial Program (ISCP) in Brooklyn, NY respectively.