Louvre is all around us in the capital.The landmark Louvre Abu Dhabi has made a huge cultural splash – not just here but all over the world – since it opened its doors last month.
Now the magnificent museum, which is set to play a massive part in the emirate’s art movement for generations to come, is marking an important milestone by launching its first two exhibitions.
The first, From One Louvre to Another, explores the fascinating history of the museum that paved the way for Abu Dhabi’s striking dome-like structure, the Musée du Louvre in Paris.
Louvre Abu Dhabi’s first temporary exhibition, which is now underway and runs until April 7, includes 150 masterpieces from the Château de Versailles and the Louvre’s earliest collections, including painting, sculpture, furniture and ceramics gathered from across the world.
The exhibition will span the impressive history of the world-famous museum, featuring the royal collections of Louis XIV through to the pioneering artists’ studios and workshops and the grand opening of the museum following the political upheaval of the French Revolution.
The extensive display has been curated by Jean-Luc Martinez, president-director of the Musée du Louvre, and Juliet Trey, curator of 17th and 18th Century drawings and prints.
A second exhibition, Co-Lab: Contemporary Art and Savoir-Faire, which is on display at the museum until March 25, celebrates a creative connection between France and the UAE.
Part of the Emirati-French Cultural Programme set up by the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi and France’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development, Ministry of Culture and Communication and the Institut Français in January 2016, the display showcases four contemporary works of art covering a variety of different media created by UAE-based artists in collaboration with renowned French manufacturers.
The international partnerships, borne out of a mutual inspiration across continents to create great works of art, saw the Manufacture Nationale de Sèvres welcome artist Talin Habzar to help shape ceramic designs.
Meanwhile, the manufacturing company of Beuvais embarked upon a collaboration with Khalid Shafar, focused upon the art of weaving, the luxury glassware firm of Saint-Just joined forces with Zeinab Alhashemi and MTX Broderie Architecturale teamed up with Vikram Divecha.
Dh60 (general admission), Dhs30 (13-22), free (kids under 13, journalists and visitors with special needs as well as their companions). Open Sat, Sun, Tue and Wed 10am-8pm; Thu-Fri 10am-10pm. Saadiyat Cultural District, Saadiyat Island, www.louvreabudhabi.ae (600 565 566).