Nur Shkembi doesn’t like to use the words “east” and “west”, and yet in many ways, her work as art director of the newly opened Islamic Museum of Australia occupies the boundary between the two. Even from the outside, the hybrid identity of the building is clear: nestled in Melbourne’s northern suburbs and backing onto Merri Creek, the museum is wrapped in rusted steel that has been laser-cut with images from Australian and Arabic history.
Australia’s first Islamic museum is attracting huge interest from schools more than a month before opening its doors in Thornbury early next month. The $10 million Islamic Museum of Australia will open its doors to the public and school groups on March 3rd. Education director Sherene Hassan said more than 30 schools from throughout Victoria, as well as Tasmania and South Australia, had contacted the museum to organise a tour.