On Tuesday 7 March 2007, the Louvre in Paris announced that a new Louvre museum would be completed by 2012 in Abu Dhabi, with a revised estimate in early 2013 for a completion date of 2015. These both fell short of the current projection of an opening in late 2016.
This is part of a thirty-year agreement between the city of Abu Dhabi and the French government. The museum is to be located on the Saadiyat Island Cultural District, and will be approximately 24,000 square metres (260,000 sq ft) in size.
The first universal museum in the Arab world, Louvre Abu Dhabi is an innovative and ambitious project. It’s intended to be a place of discovery, exchange and education. It will also play an important social role in United Arab Emirates. In this respect, it can be seen as a product of the 18th-century Enlightenment in Europe. This movement gave birth to the principle of the encyclopedic and universal museum housing diverse collections of artworks for the purposes of public display and scientific study.
The museum will present major objects from the fields of archaeology, fine arts and decorative arts. It will also represent all regions, periods, including contemporary art and the narrative of art history.
Louvre Abu Dhabi is developing its own national collection, which will be enriched by loans from French museums including Musée du Louvre, Musée d’Orsay, and Centre Pompidou. The dialogue between artworks, sculptures and objects allow visitors to discover shared influences and intriguing connections between different cultures around the globe – giving insight into the history of humankind since the beginning of time.