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Display of Middle Eastern collections in Wirth Gallery
Jan '08
The Wirth Gallery of the Middle East is a 4,052 square foot (380 square metre) exploration of the civilizations that started in the Fertile Crescent and beyond, including the current day regions of Afghanistan, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, the West Bank, Syria, Turkey, and Yemen.

The diverse display of more than 1,000 artifacts examines the region's contributions to both eastern and western
civilizations through culture and technology from the Palaeolithic Age to AD 1900.

The gallery comprises five main sections focusing primarily on Arms & Armour, Arts In Life, Documents and Writing, Technology, and Ancient Spirituality & Religion. The gallery also shares a temporary exhibition space with the adjacent Christopher Ondaatje South Asian Gallery to showcase objects from the ROM's Middle Eastern and South Asian collections.

Krzysztof Ciuk, Assistant Curator, Material Culture of Islam, in the ROM's World Cultures department, says, “In creating the new Wirth Gallery of the Middle East, the curatorial team has attempted to illustrate the wide and varied aspects of the history of the lands which, both in the past and presently, remain under cultural and religious influence of the Fertile Crescent, Mesopotamia, and Levant.

Our approach is essentially a thematic one, highlighting a number of fundamental themes, from economic to artistic to spiritual, to examine the diverse peoples and cultures of the Middle East.”

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