The Mahmoud Darwish Museum
It is a cultural and public park complex situated in Ramallah – Al-Masyoun – opposite to the Ramallah Cultural Palace, and on a hill overlooking Jerusalem. It covers an ??approximate area of 9000 m2.
The complex Includes: a multi-purpose hall, a library, the Mahmoud Darwish museum, an outdoors summer theater, and the free platform space, in addition to the tomb and the public garden.
Simplicity, humility, the homeland, the land, the village, love, freedom, the dream, the struggle, steadfastness, realism, hope, ambition, longing, identity, peace, and symbolism all represent Mahmoud Darwish. These were some of the characteristics that had shaped his character as a poet, a politician, and a human being. They were some of the attributes that the designer had attempted to interpret into ideas that constitute the foundations of the memorial garden design for the great poet. The tranquility of the design and the simplicity of its architectural forms contain the poet’s modesty, and its incorporation in the site and the immersion of its elements in the earth instill the depth of the relationship between the poet and his land.
The fluid ascent of the project’s slopes and its flights of steps symbolize the journey of the poet in the presentation of his case to the world. The gardens and retaining walls built with traditional stone are in remembrance of the village and the hand-built walls of its farms and squares. As to freedom of expression, it is housed at the opinion platform, while the body of water symbolizes the dream and life.
The components of the Garden:
The park contains the grave of the great poet, a memorial museum, a multi-purpose hall, an outdoor theater, a promenade park, and bodies of water.
The Museum Building:
It aims to exhibit some of the memorabilia of the departed poet, like manus and private belongings, and it also houses a video viewing hall and a library that includes the poet’s works and poetry collections, in addition to other literary books.
The Multi-purpose Hall:
It provides a celebratory space to host various cultural occasions, and has a flexible design which permits the possibility of sectioning it off into three separate halls for use as lecture rooms.
The Outdoors Theater:
It has a capacity for five hundred persons and has a platform and service rooms for the various shows.
It is landscaped to contain green spaces, flowers, and trees from the Palestinian countryside, as well as shady pathways, rest areas, and bodies of water.
The Ramallah Museum
The Ramallah Museum is located in the Ramallah old town, and used to be the property of the Zaru family. It was renovated in 1996-1997 so it would become an educational museum for the Ramallah governorate. It is an architectural masterpiece and consists of three floors.
The ground floor was built in the early nineteenth century, and then the top two floors were added in the early twentieth century. In the years 1996-1997, the Department of Antiquities and Cultural Heritage renovated the building as part of the project for emergency cleanup of archaeological sites, funded by the Dutch government, and with support from the UNESCO, to become an educational museum for the Ramallah governorate.
The museum consists of three floors:
The ground floor: It was equipped to be a laboratory and an exhibit of traditional heritage material from the governorate, in addition to momentary exhibits.
The first floor consists of two adjacent rooms. The first contains archaeological material from various regions of Palestine that date back to the Stone Age, the Copper Age, and even the Roman era. These were tools used in everyday life as well as funereal gifts. This section was arranged in the chronological progression of the eras. The second room contains archaeological material from the Ramallah governorate from different periods, and which have been unearthed through recovery excavations carried out by the Department of Antiquities, so the visitor to this educational museum can learn the story of Ramallah throughout the various ages.
The second floor consists of two rooms, the first is for the management of the museum and contains a library, while the second is a viewing room and contains a video and CD library pertaining to relics and cultural heritage.
The Museum Program:
The primary goal of the museum is educational. The museum exhibits are paralleled by an educational program targeting school students primarily in accordance with the school curriculum, thus serving to augment teaching methods.
The Museum Activities:
- Organizing educational visits to the museum in coordination with schools and local educational institutions.
- Organizing lectures offered by local and international experts in the fields of archeology and cultural heritage in the museum, to link the curriculum to practical application.
- Practical activities: Limited workshops on certain crafts, like terracotta, mosaics, and other materials available in the museum that are suitable for the students’ age and that are related to the curriculum.
- Showing of documentaries about World Heritage Sites.
- Reception of small groups of foreign or local visitors.
- The museum also offers extracurricular programs targeting the community in general.