How to explore the best of Sharjah from the comfort of your home

02 April 2020

Social distancing has forced parks, museums, galleries and other entertainment spaces to close temporarily, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make the most of Sharjah’s incredible natural and cultural attractions. Simply log on and review these four options, which showcase the best of the Emirate online.

 

Sharjah Art Foundation Online

Sharjah Art Foundation (SAF)’s many galleries, spaces and shops may be temporarily be closed and all events suspended, but the SAF team have worked fast to bring a wide range of offerings online for everyone around the world to enjoy. For film buffs, there is a huge selection of award-winning independent films and cinema classics, all of which can be streamed on digital devices.

SAF’s learning team has also put together livestreamed workshops, do-it-yourself videos and other creative resources. In addition, there is a large video library of talks by renowned artists and curators that were previously presented at SAF events (like its annual March meeting), as well as a selection of podcasts and audio content that focuses on a range of material from music, art, film and much more.

 

 

Barjeel Art Foundation

You may be aware that many of the world’s top museums and galleries – including the Louvre and the British Museum – are offering virtual tours of their most popular exhibitions. Step forward Barjeel Art Foundation, the UAE’s most prominent independent arts initiative, which is focused on modern and contemporary Arab art. Its website is currently hosting a virtual tour of its latest exhibit, entitled A Century in Flux, which is the second part of the foundation’s partnership with Sharjah Art Museum. If you’ve never been on a virtual gallery tour before, this is a fantastic introduction to the concept, providing the ability to stand in any spot in the ‘gallery’, assess each piece of art and its context from a range of views, while also having access to detailed guidance on each artwork at the same time.

 

 

Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilisation

One of Sharjah’s finest and most architecturally striking museums may be closed, but don’t let that deter you. In partnership with Museum With No Frontiers (MWNF), Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilisation has put some of its most treasured objects online. From bracelets and enamelled vases to Holy Quran manuscripts with incredible calligraphy and intricate jewellery, each piece is catalogued with a description that you can download straight from the website. Don’t forget to view one of the standout pieces, a curtain for the door of the Holy Kaaba in Makkah.

 

 

Sharjah Art Museum

Another recently announced venture is the online self-guided virtual tour of Sharjah Art Museum. Accessed via the Sharjah Museums Authority website, you can now see beautiful pieces from the UAE’s most famous artist, Abdul Qader Al Rais, as well as other renowned artists from the Gulf, the rest of the region and around the world. Simply click on this link to go straight to the museum’s Modern and Contemporary Arab Art Collection.

 

 

Sharjah International Festival for Children and Youth

The cinemas may have closed, but this Sharjah online children’s film festival is very much up and running. Between now and 31 May, you can find a selection of curated films for children on the www.siff.ae website. In total, 11 films from all over the world can be streamed for free, including Kuwaiti feature film ‘A Picture’, Emirati flick ‘Nagafa’ and ‘The Chocolate Soldier’ from the US.

 

 

Mleiha

On a more light-hearted note, if you’re missing the sights of one of the UAE’s most spectacular spots – the desert around Mleiha – then check out this VR footage. If you want a 360-degree view of what it’s really like to go paragliding above the dunes, or driving in a 4x4 through the desert, then this short video is for you.

 

Related article: 6 amazing places to take your family to in Sharjah

 

*A version of this article was originally published by Al Khaleej newspaper.