06:09 GMT +320 September 2019
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    ‘Return to Mosul’: Contemporary Art Exhibition Opens at City’s Museum

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    The museum suffered greatly during Daesh*’s reign, with a large part of its collection either destroyed or trafficked. Nevertheless, the museum decided to turn to modern art instead.

    Mosul Museum, the second largest museum in Iraq, is hosting its first exhibit since the liberation of the city by Iraqi troops, Asharq Al-Awsat reports.

    During the Daesh occupation, much of its collection was either purposefully destroyed or trafficked in order to finance the group's operations. Much of the museum is still closed to the public, mostly because of security reasons, according to Zeid Saadallah, the director.

    ​Therefore, the museum has turned to modern art, the report says. The exhibit, entitled "Return to Mosul," features 29 different artists, whose works feature themes of home, return or conflict.

    "[The exhibit] is a proof that war didn't kill Mosul, and that, on the contrary, it's living a full-on renaissance," one of the visitors said.

    ​During its reign over the city, Daesh released numerous videos showing terrorists destroying priceless pre-Islamic art pieces, including, among other things, two imposing "lamassu" statues, Assyrian winged bulls with human faces.

    What was not destroyed was sold on the black market to finance the group's activities.

    ​In an attempt to restore the former glory of the collection, Mosul's artists and technicians turned to Google, 3D printer maker BQ and other organizations to create printed versions of the smashed pieces, Al-Awsat reports.

    ​Daesh also destroyed the Assyrian city of Nimrud, the ancient city of Hatra and the centuries-old desert city of Palmyra in neighboring Syria.

    *Daesh is a terrorist group banned in Russia.

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    art exhibition, Daesh, Iraq, Mosul
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