The Institute’s objective is to disseminate knowledge about the Arab world. The Museum’s role is to explore this knowledge from the perspective of heritage. Its collections attest to cultures that, from earliest antiquity, spread throughout the regions over which the Arab world now extends.
Classified as a ‘Musée de France’, the Museum’s goal is to enable as many people as possible to have access to culture, via specific educational initiatives and dissemination. The Institute’s Museum also participates in various events, such as the European Museum Night (and in the associated project ‘La classe, l’œuvre !’), European Heritage Days, and ‘Nuit Blanche’ (when various sites in Paris stay open all night, with free admission).
Every year, the AWI organises temporary exhibitions that highlight the wealth and diversity of the creative potential of the Arab world. Some exhibitions focus on the historical heritage of these regions, such as the exhibition ‘Osiris: the Submerged Mysteries of Egypt ’, while other present contemporary Arab culture, via projects ranging from ‘Hip-Hop—From the Bronx to the Arab Streets’ to ‘Contemporary Morocco’. Exhibitions can also focus on societal themes, such as ‘Hajj: The Pilgrimage to Mecca’, or on the links between the East and the West, with ‘The Orient-Express’. Great emphasis is placed on the educational component of each exhibition to ensure it appeals to a broad audience comprising people of every age and background.