The building design of the Palestinian Museum has won the World Architecture Festival Award for 2017 for the category of Culture – Completed Buildings. This award adds to a series of awards and recognitions received by the Palestinian Museum since its completion.
This achievement came after the Palestinian Museum competed in the category of Culture – Completed Buildings, as one of 14 cultural buildings from around the world. This short list included distinguished architectural projects, such as the Tara Theatre in the United Kingdom, the Mleiha Archaeological Centre in Sharjah, the Zhao Hua Xi Shi Living Museum in China, the ASB Waterfront Theatre in New Zealand, the Nantes Arts Museum in France, and others. Since its launch in 2008, the World Architecture Festival has been considered one of the most important world festivals of architecture. In its latest edition in Berlin, 500 architectural projects from around the world competed in 32 categories.
The chairperson of the Palestinian Museum Board of Taawon (Welfare Association), Zina Jardaneh, expressed pride at the museum’s winning such a prestigious award, competing with important architectural projects worldwide. She added that this recognition raises the museum’s status, reputation, and role on a global level.
The Palestinian Museum building was designed by the Irish architectural firm, Heneghan Peng, after they won an international architectural design competition held by the Taawon (Welfare Association) in 2011. The museum’s design is distinguished by its clean, contemporary design that blends seamlessly with the local rural landscape. The building’s structure references the terraced hills of Palestine and is surrounded by terraced gardens, planted with trees and flowers native to Palestine.
The building also received the “Presidential Award” of the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland this year, and has recently earned the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council, in addition to participating in the international exhibition “New Museums: Intentions, Expectations, Challenges” in the Musée d’art et d’histoire in Geneva.
The Palestinian Museum’s General Director, Dr. Mahmoud Hawari, pointed to the significance of this international recognition which raises the museum’s ambitions and standard of work to a global level, not only in terms of architecture and building, but also in terms of conveying the Palestinian narrative and promoting Palestine’s cultural status.
The Palestinian Museum is an independent institution dedicated to supporting an open and dynamic Palestinian culture nationally and internationally. The museum presents and engages with new perspectives on Palestinian history, society and culture. The museum is a flagship project of Taawon (Welfare Association), an independent Palestinian non-profit organisation, committed to providing development and humanitarian assistance in Palestine and the Palestinian communities in Lebanon.