The Louvre Abu Dhabi
Completion date announced
The opening of the Abu Dhabi Art festivities has seen an exciting official announcement; the Louvre Abu Dhabi will open to visitors on December 2 2015.
French Minister of Culture, Aurélie Filippetti revealed the details to art enthusiasts at the event, and is visiting the region along with the Louvre director, Jean-Luc Martinez (he replaced Thierry Andretta in April of this year).
The Louvre contract has been signed for the next 30 years: it includes the use of the original title of the museum, and with that the opportunity to host some of the world's finest masterpieces there.
Martinez also explained that over 300 works of art have been earmarked for the Middle East branch of the museum. Filippetti, in turn, noted that the new Louvre will have a strong focus on the culture of the UAE and the work of artists throughout the 20th century.
Some critics have called the move a 'selling of the museum's soul', in the opinion that the historic Louvre should really only be present in its home country of France. However director of the Museums of France - Lawrence De Kar - counteracts with confidence that the new branch will be a symbol of unity of different cultures.
The construction of the Louvre Abu Dhabi is underway by successful French architect Jean Nouvel. The shiny white building of 64 thousand square meters is being built in the centre of the city's new Saadiyat Island. The contemporary design is decorated with a beautiful 'laced' roof meaning that light penetrates through, to quite amazing effect - the architect is no stranger to the Middle East, having also built the Burj Doha in Qatar with a similarly latticed shell.