The Binding Thread Between the East and West



Louvre Abu Dhabi’s exterior. Picture: Mohamed Somji

In 2017, the Arab world welcomed its first common museum the place well-known collections of artwork and different culturally important objects from all over the world are housed within the Louvre Abu Dhabi. Standing proudly on the United Arab Emirates’ Saadiyat Island, the museum serves as a bridge between Japanese and Western civilisations. For Louvre Abu Dhabi, the establishment is about on spotlighting the tales of human creativity. “The museum brings completely different cultures collectively to shine contemporary mild on these frequent tales of humanity, past particular person civilisations, instances or locations,” as talked about on the museum’s web site.

The institution of the Louvre Abu Dhabi resulted from an intergovernmental settlement between the gulf state and France. As a part of the broader US$1.3 billion accord with France’s Agence France-Museum, the identify of the Louvre might be loaned to Abu Dhabi for a interval of 30.5 years and a payment of US$520 million can also be given. In change, the UAE museum will get to accommodate artworks from 17 French cultural establishments, from Leonardo da Vinci’s portrait of “La Belle Ferronnière” to Francesco Primaticcio’s bronze statue “Apollo Belvedere”. Steering by consultants can also be given to assist the museum choose items to accumulate.

The inauguration of the Louvre Abu Dhabi in 2017 was titled “From One Louvre to One other: Opening a Museum for Everybody” and featured 600 masterpieces. At the moment, it sought to retrace the Parisian museum’s origins to a time when the general public lastly acquired entry to those uncommon collections. However in contrast to its Western counterpart, Jean-François Charnier, head curator at Louvre Abu Dhabi, has organised the artworks chronologically and thematically and never by homeland.

Other than what the Louvre Abu Dhabi holds inside its constructing, the museum’s exterior can also be a marvel in its personal proper. Designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Jean Nouvel, the visible masterpiece expertly showcased his abilities in utilising geometry and lightweight. Earlier than designing the museum, the Frenchman was already recognized for his works with the Arab World Institute and Basis Cartier in Paris, and the Tradition and Congress Centre in Lucerne. For Louvre Abu Dhabi, Nouvel was impressed by the pure components of Saadiya Island and the need to mix it with Arab tradition and Abu Dhabi itself. 

View overlooking the ocean. Picture: Mohamed Somji.

The result’s a dome construction rendered in metal and its complicated geometric roof permits for the impact often called “rain of sunshine” to occur as daylight passes by way of the eight structural layers. Patterns of sunshine illuminate the museum’s partitions and ground giving rise to an phantasm of being shaded by the palm bushes frequent in Abu Dhabi as their leaves filter and soften the brilliant daylight from above. Regardless of the notion of being weightless as shadows and lights interaction, the construction weighs round 7,000 tonnes and is just like that of the Eiffel Tower in Paris — one other connection to France.

In keeping with an article by The New York Occasions, Zaki Nusseibeh, Minister of State, mentioned that the federal government “considers the Louvre Abu Dhabi a part of a cultural technique to counter tensions within the area”. Moreover, the Emirates’s final objective is “to advertise the capital as a tolerant world metropolis, and its flagship museum as a bridge between civilisations.” As well as, Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, Chairman, Division of Tradition and Tourism, added that the museum seeks to “encourage a brand new era of cultural leaders and artistic thinkers to contribute to our rapidly-changing and tolerant nation.”

Claude Monet’s “Ladies within the Backyard.

Quick ahead to 2022, the museum celebrates its fifth anniversary and a particular exhibition is held from 12 October 2022 to five February 2023. Titled “Impressionism: Pathway to Modernity”, works from masters resembling Cezanne, Degas, Manet, Monet, Pissarro and Renoir might be on show. This showcase is touted to be one of the important exhibitions on nineteenth century artwork motion ever held exterior of France and guests will stand to see over 150 artworks. This consists of Claude Monet’s “Ladies within the Backyard” and “London, Parliament”. The exhibition’s theme additionally aptly resonates with the happenings within the gulf area the place there’s a dissonance between modernity and custom as society transitions into the brand new world.

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