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The Majlis


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The Majlis in the Making • Social regeneration and community development through craftsmanship, ethical entrepreneurship, education and music • Tradition and modernity in the recently urbanised landscape of Qatar; the dichotomy of a nomadic culture rooted in static urban environments • Interview with Abdel Wahed El Wakil discussing the role of tradition, beauty, and architecture in the modernised world

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A new structure within the context of the Venice Biennale's theme 'How will we live together?', The Majlis brings together an international array of individuals, cultural influences and artisanal skills

About the Author

Thierry Morel is an art historian and curator who graduated from the universities of Paris and Oxford in law and history of art. He was a post-doctoral research associate at the University of Cambridge and for Venice in Peril co-authored The Venice Report: Demography, Tourism, Financing and Change of Use of Buildings. Thierry wrote and produced Private View, a documentary series on leading international art collectors for Time Warner. He curated the award-winning Houghton Revisited exhibition at Houghton Hall as well as Francis Bacon and the Art of the Past at the State Hermitage Museum on the occasion of the Museum's 250th Anniversary and subsequently at the Sainsbury Centre in Norwich. His book on pre-Revolution architecture and art collecting in St Petersburg was just published by Rizzoli (New York). Morel is currently Director and Curator-at-Large to the Hermitage Museum Foundation (USA), as well as Trustee of the Sir John Soane's Museum (London).

Simón Vélez has more than 50 years' experience working with natural materials and is widely regarded for his innovative use of bamboo. To date, he has designed and built over 200 buildings in Germany, France, USA, Brazil, Mexico, China, Jamaica, Colombia, Panama, Ecuador, and India. He has been awarded The Principal Prince Claus Award (2009) and the Award of Honour in Analysis and Planning by the American Society of Landscape Architects for 'Crosswaters Ecolodge' (2006).

Todd Longstaffe-Gowan read Environmental Studies at the University of Manitoba, Landscape Architecture at Harvard University and completed his PhD in Historical Geography at University College, London. Todd has advised on many public and private historic landscapes, including the National Trust and English Heritage, The Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, and Kensington Palace Gardens. He recently designed a garden for the Morgan Library, New York City, is working with David Kohn Architects on a new campus for New College, Oxford, and in January 2020 he won an international competition with Eric Parry Architects to redesign the British Ambassador's residence and grounds in Beijing.

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