AKM Toronto 5

The first museum in North America devoted to Islamic arts and culture is due to open on 18 September in an unlikely place: the Don Mills suburb of Toronto, Canada. The Aga Khan, the spiritual leader of the Ismaili Muslim community, philanthropist and chairman of the Aga Khan Development Network, is the founder of the C$300m ($275m) complex, which also includes a community centre and gardens covering 753,473 sq. ft. Eight years in the making, the 113,000 sq. ft Aga Khan Museum seeks to increase knowledge and understanding of Muslim civilisations through the arts of the Islamic world. The more than 1,000-strong collection, which includes illuminated manuscripts, ceramics, textiles, paintings, scientific texts and musical instruments, spans 11 centuries and is drawn from the personal holdings of the Aga Khan and his family.

Read More: Aga Khan’s Gift to Canada

See also: The Aga Khan Museum: An Oasis on the Outskirts of Toronto