Abu Dhabiís Plan 2030 on track again
Abu Dhabiís Tourism Development and Investment Company (TDIC) has pushed back the opening dates for the museums of the Saadiyat Cultural District: the Louvre Abu Dhabi is set to open in 2015, Zayed National Museum in 2016 and Guggenheim Abu Dhabi in 2017. TDIC confirmed this timeline has been finalised in close coordination with partners and advisors, Agence France Museums, The British Museum, and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation.
Earlier the Abu Dhabi Executive Council had announced a raft of new building and infrastructure projects, as part of its Plan 2030. The museums are a key component of the plan to diversify the emirateís economy and develop its growing tourism sector.
Substantial work has already been completed on the museums. Detailed architectural designs have now been finalised, as well as all foundation and piling work. Growing teams with regional expertise that will operate each institution are undergoing comprehensive training, and the acquisition of the vast and diverse art and artifact collections for each is well underway.
Designed by Pritzker Architecture Prize winner Jean Nouvel, Louvre Abu Dhabi is set to be the first Universal museum in the Arab World, and will showcase art from different civilisations and cultures. It will display paintings, sculptures, decorative arts, manuscripts and objects of historical, cultural and sociological significance from the ancient to the contemporary. The most distinctive feature of Louvre Abu Dhabi is its 180-metre diameter dome, with intricate perforations, designed to resemble rays of sunlight passing through date palm fronds and diffusing light below. Acquisitions for the permanent collection of the Louvre Abu Dhabi have already been announced. More pieces of art are currently being revealed in a public programme, Louvre Abu Dhabi: Talking Art Series in the form of a series of nine monthly lectures at Manarat Al Saadiyat, the art and exhibition centre already opened in the Saadiyat Cultural District.
An institution conceived as a place for discussion, learning, and inspiration, Zayed National Museum will tell the story of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyanís life, while exploring the history and culture of the UAE. Pritzker Architecture Prize winner Lord Norman Foster designed the museum and its distinctive towers are reminiscent of the wing tips of the falcon, a powerful symbol of the cultural heritage of the UAE. Zayed National Museum will have seven permanent gallery displays as well as a temporary exhibition programme and library. TDIC is currently completing a series of research trips with the British Museum involving meetings across the nationís seven Emirates with UAE experts and institutions. The visits have revealed a wealth of information and artifacts stretching back as far as 2000 BCE that will support the compilation of other relevant resources for the museum including documents, film, images, sound and archival material.
Guggenheim Abu Dhabi is a transnational platform for contemporary art that will present the most important artistic achievements of our time.