The renowned Al-Thani Collection, owned by the governing family of Qatar, will be shown at the Hotel de la Marine in Paris following a partnership between the Centre des Monuments Nationaux (CMN) and the Al Thani Collection Foundation. CMN confirmed the partnership after weeks of speculation and further announced a donation from the Al-Thani family as part of the 18th Century Hotel’s massive restoration efforts.
“As part of the agreement, the Centre des Monuments Nationaux will receive an extremely generous donation which will support both the restoration of the Hôtel de la Marine as well as other heritage projects in France,” CMN announced, according to a project statement.
The Al-Thani Family is known to be heavily invested in the arts both in the MEA region and abroad. Their collection spans many centuries of invaluable jewellery and antiquities and is frequently being showcased at institutions around the world. They recently launched a Qatar National Vision 2030 initiative that involves the creation of several new museums and art institutions, further cementing their emphasis on the arts.
The first exhibition featuring the Al-Thani collection has been set to take place around the same time as the completion of Hotel de la Marine’s €100m restoration, or Spring 2020 currently. According to Le Monde, the Al-Thani Foundation donated €20m to show the works over the next two decades.
The Head of CMN, Philippe Belaval, released a statement saying that “the choice of His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Abdullah Al Thani to commit to showing the collection at the Hotel de la Marine confirms France’s exceptional cultural appeal.”
The collection spans over four centuries of works, including priceless jewellery dating back to the Mughal period up until today, as well as numerous paintings, manuscripts and sculptures. Some of the collection is currently on display at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco as part of the museum’s latest exhibition: “East Meets West: Jewels of the Mahrajas from the Al Thani Collection”.
Given the increased treatment of art as an asset class, it is instances like this that give the public a chance to engage with remarkable pieces on a deep level. With an estimated total of $4 trillion being invested in “treasure assets,” including art and various “precious objects” that often get locked up in storage facilities, the Al Thani Collection is setting a great example.