Qatar, Travel

Art in the Qatar Desert: Richard Serra’s East-West/West-East

February 1, 2016

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra Over this last weekend, I was a chaperone on an overnight camping trip in the Qatar desert. The students had picked the area under the Richard Serra sculpture East-West/West-East, which I had not been to yet. The area of Qatar that it is located in is called Zekreet. It does not take long to drive out there unless you are bringing a van load of students in a non off-roading vehicle. As we bumped along the sometimes bumpy and rocky desert, the beauty and enormity of the sculpture became present. It almost looks as if an alien ship used these four pillars to dock their ship and left them behind when they decided Qatar was too hot to stay in. The surrounding landscape is also what many movies have used to depict an alien planet. The sculpture both takes over the landscape but also blends right in. The light changes the desert and the sculpture throughout the day. The photos were taken from the early afternoon to evening and then early the next morning as the sun came up.

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra

Art in the Desert, Richard Serra

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra

 

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra

Art in the Qatar Desert, Richard Serra

Richard Serra and the Qatar Museums wanted this piece to be public art. You can drive right up to the sculpture and touch it. The steel is developing a patina quickly in the desert climate. What I like most about Richard Serra’s work is that it gives you a sense of space, whether the piece is something you can walk right up to or a piece that you can into. East-West/West-East isn’t the only Richard Serra piece in Qatar. 7 is located at the end of the Museum of Islāmic Art Park on the corniche in Doha.

Getting there: As I witnessed this weekend, you may not need a four-wheeled drive vehicle to get to the Richard Serra sculpture, but you might want one to be more comfortable. At different times of the day, the sculpture looks different, so keep that in mind. Also, if you want photos with no one else in them, go early or late in the day as people were visiting it all day. Luckily you can now search for East-West/West-East on a Google map and find driving directions. We headed out of Doha on the Dukhan Highway and exited at the Cuban Hospital and drove out to Zekreet village and approached from the west, but you can approach from the east. Here is a link to the Google map location.

You Might Also Like

10 Comments

  • Reply Friday Favorites | A Girl and Her PassportA Girl and Her Passport February 5, 2016 at 11:02 am

    […] hope you all have had a great week! As you may have seen from Monday’s post, I spent the last weekend in the desert camping with students. This was the coldest weekend in […]

  • Reply Why You Should Visit Qatar on Your Next Vacation! | A Girl and Her PassportA Girl and Her Passport March 21, 2016 at 1:22 pm

    […] amazing. It changes depending on which part of the country you are in. You can even see art in the desert or slide down some singing sand dunes. Shockingly, I enjoy camping here since there are few things […]

  • Reply Emmalene April 6, 2017 at 10:25 am

    Is it terrible that I really have no idea what Qatar looks like? Great insight Tiffany!

    • Reply Tiffany April 6, 2017 at 10:35 am

      No I really had no idea till I moved here! Thanks

  • Reply Ritu April 6, 2017 at 10:33 am

    These are amazing photos Tiffany!
    Ritu recently posted…Song Challenge (Music That Means Something) Day 1 – Rag’N’Bone Man – HumanMy Profile

    • Reply Tiffany April 6, 2017 at 10:36 am

      Thank you so much!!

  • Reply Josy A April 6, 2017 at 3:16 pm

    Wow. I have never heard of this, but it looks stunning.

    Did you manage to get any sleep at all with a busload of kids? I’ve helped out at rainbows sleepovers before and always come home totally exhausted. Camping in the desert plus little ‘uns sounds like it would be knackering!!

    • Reply Tiffany April 6, 2017 at 3:22 pm

      It was more that it was cold than the kids. Plus these are college kids so not as bad.

  • Reply Noelle April 6, 2017 at 11:01 pm

    Your pictures are unbelievable! That sounds like some experience!
    Noelle recently posted…Book Review: Embers by Kenneth W. CainMy Profile

    • Reply Tiffany April 6, 2017 at 11:04 pm

      Thank you so much! It was unforgettable.

    Leave a Reply

    CommentLuv badge

    %d bloggers like this: