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“Shangri La Museum of Islamic Art, Culture & Design Speaks for Itself,” Pacific Business News

Konrad Ng, Shangri La Museum of Islamic Art’s executive director, talks about opportunities that came from the COVID-19 pandemic shutdowns in a Pacific Business News interview. 

In an interview for Pacific Business News, Konrad Ng, executive director of Shangri La, discusses his use of the COVID-19 pandemic shutdowns as an opportunity to lead the museum virtually and connect it with the Hawai’ian community through online exhibitions and its first artist in residence.  

Ng noted: “One of the things that became quite clear to us over a year ago was that people are still hungry for connection. We continued, much like other places, to shift our work [online], which includes exhibitions, but not the same exhibitions … actually work with artists who are based in Hawaii which is a bit of a new pivot for us, to think of community first in terms of creating a space for artistic appreciation and understanding Islamic art. 

We opened two exhibitions, both were planned prior to the shutdown, prior to Covid, and both were rooted in community. One was #8x8, which was 16 artists, eight in visual arts and eight performing artists, and then our artist-in-residence, Kamran Samimi, who is on the Big Island. We had those exhibitions planned already and then we just decided to ship it online. It’s terrific because the focus was local, and also to think about how our museum intersects with local conversations, but also how the local conversations shape the global understanding of Islamic art. So we’ve been active online in that way.” 

Read more in Pacific Business News.