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Balqees Abdul-Hakeem Nakhla

Università degli Studi di Padova

Graduate Student and Independent Researcher

Country: Palestine

ITP Year: 2019


Balqees is currently pursuing postgraduate studies in Applied Sciences: Cultural Heritage Materials and Sites Conservation, at Padova University in Italy. Her MA programme is interdisciplinary, providing both theoretical knowledge and practical skills, and focuses on investigating cultural heritage materials using scientific methods, covering everything from site surveys to analysing materials at molecular and atomic levels. In 2022 Balqees worked as a Research Fellow in Ethnological Islamic Art at the Vatican Museums in the Vatican City.

Before returning to education, Balqees worked as the Collections Assistant at Birzeit University Museum, where her day-to-day responsibilities included collections management, storage and documentation. She was also responsible for preparing and storing research materials for visitors and researchers and updating the museum’s records. Balqees also worked a as a course instructor for first year students in Birzeit University, where she worked on creating a permanent exhibition using the museum’s collections of both art and ethnography.

Balqees originally started volunteering at the Birzeit University Museum in 2015 as an undergraduate student in English Literature, where she was mainly responsible for tour guiding and carrying out office tasks. She later became a trainee on the ethnographic and art collections. This experience convinced her that she wanted to become a part of the museum world. Her experience in culture and the arts has become a means of self-expression and being exposed to different perspectives of the world has helped change her views towards the world and her surroundings.

At the British Museum

During her time on the International Training Programme Balqees was based in the Middle East Department spent her partner placement at Norfolk Museums Service.

In 2019 participants were asked to plan and propose a temporary exhibition around an object from the Museum’s collection working within the theme of journeys.  Balqees worked with Khine Mon Kyaw (Myanmar) on her Object in focus project. Their exhibition proposal was entitled Turkmen Textile Journeys: between identity and history.

Balqees’ place on the International Training Programme was generously supported by the Altajir Trust.