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Exhibition revives Arab, Muslim culture – ‘1,001 Inventions: A Journey to Past’

1001-inventionsKUWAIT: An exhibition of facts, history and contributions by Middle Eastern people to the world was inaugurated yesterday at the Scientific Center in Salmiya under the patronage of HH the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah. The ‘1,001 Inventions: A Journey to Past’ exhibition is being held in a tent especially set up for the exhibition in front of the Scientific Center till March 7. Ahmed Salim, director and producer of the exhibition, was delighted to hold this event in Kuwait, one of the largest exhibitions he has ever organized outside the United Kingdom.

The exhibition tells of the achievements of the Islamic civilization. Inventions by Arab scientists highlighted at the exhibition are based on historical and scientific facts and knowledge and links from the ancient Greeks, Romans and Egyptians. The scientists achieved new discoveries and paved the way for the European Renaissance.

Salim said the exhibition’s objective is to fill the gap in educating kids about Middle Eastern civilization and its contribution to the world. “When I was in school, all the books were about the Greek and Roman civilizations and the European Renaissance, Isaac Newton, Galileo and others, but when you turn back history, there’s like a gap of a thousand years. What happened and why it is not mentioned? We are better today because we are the product of yesterday, of the Islamic civilization,” he said. As a child growing up in the United Kingdom, he was surrounded by 30 British students at school, and was the only Arab student. “They would ask me what has been the Arabs’ contribution to the world. We have contributed a vast amount of knowledge to the modern world. There is something good about us, about the Arab culture and people, and some of you will only discover it here today. We want you to be educated and learn from it,” Salim added.

Each zone tells a story, and technology is used to share the history. Apart from a narration by actors in the film, live actors dressed in traditional Arab costumes narrate the background of each zone. “You don’t know how something came into existence. People started it; they struggled and did something we can enjoy today. Success does not come overnight. If you want to do great things, it takes time, values and patience. We just have to learn from each other,” he said. Mejbel Sulaiman Al-Mutawa, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Scientific Center, was proud to cooperate with ‘1,001 Inventions’ to display the facts about Muslim civilization.

He praised the exhibition for simplifying science and environmental awareness in an interactive way. “The exhibition is a testimony of better understanding of facts and history of the world. These are under one roof for all of us to better understand things around us in an entertaining and lively atmosphere,” he said. “We finally host this exhibition in Kuwait after a tour of many of the most important cities and capitals around the world, such as London, New York, Washington, Kuala Lumpur, Istanbul, Abu Dhabi, Riyadh, Jeddah and others, drawing more than six million visitors and achieving record figures for the number of visitors in all the cities,” Mutawa said.

The ‘1,001 Inventions’ exhibition is an interactive exhibition highlighting the scientific and technological achievements of the ‘golden age’ of Islamic civilization for more than a thousand years, which still has a significant impact on our lives today. The exhibition is accompanied by an educational campaign for students and teachers of schools, colleges and universities. The exhibition is open Sundays to Thursdays from 9 am to 1 pm and 4:30 pm to 9:30 pm, Fridays from 2 pm to 10 pm and Saturdays from 9 am to 9:30 pm

By Ben Garcia

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This article was published on 04/02/2015