Dr Julia Gonnella
Director of the Museum of Islamic Art (MIA)
Doha, Qatar

Dr. Julia Gonnella is the Director of the Museum of Islamic Art in Doha. She joined Qatar Museums in April 2017.

Inaugurated in November 2008, the Museum of Islamic Art (MIA) is Qatar Museum’s flagship museum and one of Qatar’s best visited sites with one of the world’s leading collections of its kind. As director, Dr. Julia is responsible for the full leadership of this museum, its formative management as well as its full programming.  Her current priority lies in the relaunch of the museum that involves an upgrade of the current space to be ready for the World Cup in 2022. It will introduce a completely new and more family-friendly visitor experience that allows for a much deeper understanding of the rich Islamic heritage and culture.

Previously, Dr Julia worked in the Museum of Islamic Art in Berlin where she oversaw numerous exhibitions and research projects. One of her principal research interests focused on the Citadel of Aleppo where she has been excavating for over ten years. A scholar of Islamic art and archaeology, she authored or edited ten books and over forty articles, including exhibition catalogues, such as Syria Matters, for MIA’s tenth year anniversary. She also has been teaching at Berlin and Bamberg universities.

Dr Julia earned both her B.A. in Islamic Art and Archaeology and M.A. in Social Anthropology at the School of Oriental and African Art (SOAS) in London. She received her Ph.D. from the Eberhard Karls University in Tübingen (Germany).