Jean Nouvel in Abu Dhabi


Jean Nouvel in Abu Dhabi

Since we are focusing on architecture in the Gulf at the moment, here is a full set of images of Louvre Abu Dhabi by architect Jean Nouvel.


Launched earlier this year, the project is part of the proposed new cultural district on Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi.


Shortly after the launch, it was announced that Nouvel's building - originally named the Classical Arts Museum - would become the first overseas outpost of the Louvre museum in Paris, France.


Nouvel is also the architect of Dubai Opera in the neighbouring Emirate of Dubai, and a skyscraper in Doha, Qatar.


>> more info on this project in our original story here.


>> see the location of this and other landmark architectural projects in the Gulf states on our Google Map of the area.


>> more on contemporary architecture and design in the Gulf on our blog for the International Design Forum.


Below is a statement on the project by Nouvel (in French):


Tous les climats aiment les exceptions

Plus chaudes quand il fait froid. Plus fraîches sous les tropiques. Les hommes résistent mal aux chocs thermiques. Les œuvres d’art aussi. Le musée d’art classique d’Abu Dhabi a été influencé par des constatations aussi élémentaires. Il veut créer un monde accueillant associant les lumières et les ombres, les reflets et les calmes. Il veut appartenir à un pays, à son histoire, à sa géographie sans en être la traduction plate, le pléonasme qui signifie l’ennui et la convention. Il voudrait exacerber les ………. des rencontres rares. Il est inhabituel de trouver dans la mer un archipel construit. Il n’est pas fréquent qu’il soit protéger par un parasol qui créer une pluie.


Il n’est pas évident qu’il soit possible d’y accoster en bateau, de trouver des pointillés pour y accéder à pied depuis la côte, que l’on puisse y être accueilli comme un visiteur désiré pour visiter des collections uniques, pour consulter dans les librairies tentatrices ou pour y rester longtemps pour y déguster les thès cafés et mets de la gastronomie locale.


C’est un lieu calme et complexe. Un contraste dans une série de musée qui cultivent leurs différences et leurs authenticités.


C’est un projet basé sur un signe majeur de l’architecture arabe : la coupole. La coupole est une proposition moderne par le décalage qu’elle affiche avec la tradition.

Double coupole de 180 mètres de diamètre, ………, plate, géométrie radiante parfaite, perforée dans une matière tissée plus aléatoire, créant une ombre ponctuée de ……

Jean Nouvel


Posted on Monday May 7th 2007 at 9:12 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Amit Sisack

    it would be so marvillous is life was a rendered image…

  • Daniel

    what happens when it rains?

    • Graham

      it barelly rains in the middle east not so much of a problem.

  • Johny Bravo

    Abu Dhabi´s sheikhs cooperating with china´s experts are making a project, that in this part will never rain.
    Or maybe there is a glass.

  • Rain? I nthe Emirates? LOL They wish!

  • Marcos

    That’s funny! I’m working on a project in the persian gulf; the architects and the ingeneers were also designing like if it was never rainning there; just by saying :” the climatical changes going faster and faster, what will be happening in 5 or 10 years!” ; quiet all the design have change taking in count a bit of rain but still not real “english” or alike bad weather!!! ;-)

  • George

    To Stratos…Rain? In the Emirates?

    Yes. It rains. During winter. It rains.

  • Q

    This building is magnificent

  • Danny

    top image looks like a bleak modernist hell

  • Justyn

    Nice piece of art there Jean, totally neat!!!!

  • F

    so what if it rains… that’s hardly important

  • Ahmet

    The architectural designs are stunning, at least from an architectural point of view.
    But a museum is about providing information about arts and showing pieces of art and showing historical artifacts. The looks of the museum is the illusion, the facade. But will the Louvre-AbuDhabi really be worth the name ? Will it represent historical artifacts and pieces of art in an informative way ? Or will it just be full of useless audio-visual effects rather entertaining than informing or fascinating.

    Jean Nouvel does a magnificent job and one of the greatest architects of the west today.

  • Eurico

    A wonderful idea for this place, a strong concept, and like always, thought for the place itself and nowere else. Exactly what’s expected from an architect like Jean Nouvel.

    It would be awesome if we could se the the plans

  • je vous remercie pur ces images ! :)

  • i-man

    mesmerizing!!…but in 1/100 %,there is still a chance to rain in abu dhabi, so what if it rains?..should be consider !!!

  • An amazing piece of “filigree” architecture by an amazing architect!

  • The scale and scope of this project is impressive and we can already have a taste of what it might be like, by combining two excellent projects of his:

    The Le Havre baths:

    with his Luzern roof:

    Meanwhile, I am pretty sure that the light we are seeing entering through the dome is passing through glass or polycarbonate and that the main spaces are protected from the rain.

  • jarno peltonen

    How is the climatization maintained in the exhibitions. Seems to be a humid
    environment for delicate masterpieces.