Projected Motifs Bring Ancient Islamic Empires To Life

The Museum of Islamic Art houses one of the world’s greatest collections of Islamic artifacts. Located in the Qatari capital of Doha, MIA displays Islamic Art from the past 1400 years and from three continents. The museum has been equally acclaimed for its construction design, which draws influence from ancient Islamic architecture and has become an iconic building on the Doha waterfront. For their latest exhibition, “Imperial Threads: Motifs and Artisans from Turkey, Iran and India,” the museum used Rosco Image Spot® LED Projectors projecting Custom Gobos to enrich their visitors’ experience of the exhibit.

The Museum of Islamic Art in Doha, Qatar. Image via

The exhibition “Imperial Threads: Motifs and Artisans from Turkey, Iran and India” highlights how cultural and artistic interaction was an integral aspect of material exchange in the early modern era (16th-19th century). Showcasing predominantly carpets, the exhibit also features manuscripts, metalwork, ceramics, and other objects to illustrate the historical and artistic context of this time. Opening with the Timurid period in Iran and Central Asia, the exhibit proceeds to expand on artistic practices shared amongst succeeding and neighboring dynasties - the Safavids (Iran), the Ottomans (Turkey), and the Mughals (India).

Collaborating with the architectural firm Empty, S.L., Rosco provided four Image Spots with custom gobos for the exhibition. The fixtures were mounted onto ceiling track to project images of different motifs from the Islamic world that would introduce the visitors to each section of the exhibition.

An Ottoman motif gobo projected on the floor matches the backlit artifact display

The team at Empty, S.L. conceptualized their gobo designs to reflect the motifs found in the carpets and artifacts seen in the exhibition. Each of the four designs is a decontextualization of the motifs from an object selected by the museum. The same pattern can also be seen on the backlit panel, which relates to the artifact shown in the display case attached to it. This enabled the designers to not only embellish their overall aesthetic but also support the instructional engagement of the exhibit.

The artwork was turned into four, black & white glass Image Spot Gobos. The combination of the Image Spot’s high-quality optics with our glass gobo technology provided the Empty S.L. design team with crystal clear and elegant projections of the intricate details found in the motifs.

Entering the Safavid Empire area of the “Imperial Threads” exhibition at MIA.

For more information about the projection solutions that Empty S.L. used in their lighting design for the “Imperial Threads” exhibition, visit the Image Spot and the Custom Gobo product pages on the Rosco website.





Tatiana Massano May 04, 2017 Questions?

About Tatiana Massano

Content Marketing Specialist: Based in the Madrid office, Tatiana is ideally positioned to share inspiring stories of how customers use Rosco products to accomplish their ideas in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.