Louvre Abu Dhabi to showcase collection highlights

The Louvre Abu Dhabi, which expected to open in December 2015, is to showcase some of the highlights of its new collection in a major exhibition in Paris dubbed Birth of a Museum.
Viewers will be able to experience 160 masterpieces that the emirate has acquired since 2009, including an unseen papier-colle by the modernist maestro Pablo Picasso, nine paintings by the American artist Cy Twombly and a fantastic Virgin with Child by the Italian renaissance painter Giovanni Bellini.
The idea behind the show is to give audiences something of a taster as to what the Louvre Abu Dhabi is all about. Nicknamed a ‘Universal Museum’, the establishment, which is effectively a sister institution to its legendary French namesake.
Universalism, therefore, is key, as is indicative of the wider partnership between the French government and their counterparts in Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
This includes “the confrontation of artistic testimonies of the great civilisations, from ancient times to the contemporary scene, highlighting the multidisciplinary nature of the fields of artistic creation”, an official release stated.
The Louvre Art Dhabi has been a long time in the making. The finalisation of its development happened back in 2007, when France and the UAE signed an intergovernmental agreement that confirmed the former would allow its national institution to have an international wing.
It was envisaged back then that the museum, designed by the Pritzker Prize-winning French architect Jean Nouvel, would open its doors sometime in 2012. However, this was all before the financial crisis of 2007-2008 tore apart economies all over the world, after which, impudently, it handed them a recession on a dirty silver platter.
Over the next four years it seemed that the museum would never open up, before finally, during the year the red ribbon was projected to be cut, the team behind Louvre Art Dhabi announced that a new date.
None of its backers had lost faith, as is indicative of the fact that it has been amassing an impressive collection of art and objects of historical importance. The world needs an establishment like this, one that can bridge differences and deliver a ‘new type of cultural conversation’.
The press release goes on: Its uniqueness will be based on an overarching vision of artistic creation and it will adopt an original way to present collections, combining loans from French collections and works from the Louvre Abu Dhabi’s own currently developing collection, on a rotating basis over ten years.”
Once complete, the Louvre will be represented, in total, by three establishments. In 2012, the Louvre-Lens was opened in Lens, Pas-de-Calais. Costing £196 million to develop, it garnered a lot of controversy, namely for the city it is based in. Nevertheless, it has gone on to be a success.
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