MAKTABA is an artist-run, deeply-rooted space invested in representation and culture. Our purpose is to cultivate and share knowledge, inspiration and imagination.

Meaning both “library” and “bookshop” in Arabic, MAKTABA is a concept bookshop and boutique nestled in a heritage building in the Old Port of Montreal / Tio:tia’ke. We carry a curated selection of books by diverse authors on a variety of subjects, for readers of all ages.

At MAKTABA, we value culture over commerce. While it may be perceived as a business, MAKTABA was intuited and intended as a site-specific art installation, a curatorial project, a storytelling experience, and a gathering place for our growing community-(ies). Our mission is led by what it means to create space, curate with care, and cultivate community through the power of books and knowledge. With care being central to our practice, we approach MAKTABA with a micro to macro lens on self, community and the world. Knowledge of self, critical thinking, and world-building are core elements we always return to. It is modeled on the notion of home, as wide and endless as such a concept can be.

MAKTABA is the brainchild of our collective, We Are The Medium. Founded in 2013 by Sundus Abdul Hadi and Yassin “Narcy” Alsalman, WATM is a small, independent collective based in Montreal. Our work is intentional, intuitive and fiercely independent. With a birds eye view of industry, and suspended in diaspora, our intention is to give back what we have received from culture.