Alwaleed Philanthropies “Global” Transforms the Musée du Louvre with New Spaces for Islamic Arts and Enhanced Visitor Experience
In a groundbreaking initiative, Alwaleed Philanthropies "Global" has embarked on a transformative project to create new spaces within the Musée du Louvre in Paris, dedicated to exploring Islamic arts and enriching the experience of visitors. With a deep belief in the power of art as a universal language, the project aims to foster cultural understanding and forge stronger connections between Western and Islamic cultures.
The multi-phase development project has resulted in the establishment of the Museum of Islamic Art within the iconic Louvre Museum. Its primary objectives are to emphasize the significance of art and safeguard the masterpieces of Islamic art.
Phase One: Unveiling Pedagogical Areas
The first phase of the project focused on the creation of two new pedagogical areas strategically positioned within the Department of Islamic Art. These areas include a presentation area and an exhibition area, which were officially opened on September 10, 2019, after being delivered in June of the same year. Equipped with innovative mediation tools, these expanded spaces aim to enhance the overall visitor experience.
As a testament to the project's ambition, the department organised an exceptional educational exhibition during the summer of 2019. The exhibition showcased the renowned collection of Georges Marteau, a prominent French collector of Islamic paintings. This captivating showcase marked a significant success for the project, offering the public a unique glimpse into the world of Islamic art.
Phase Two: Advanced Education and Storytelling
Continuing the project's momentum into 2020, the focus shifted towards the provision of advanced educational resources in the newly established Education area, also known as the Key Cabinet. This space was designed to offer visitors valuable insights into Islamic culture and history through storytelling and mediation techniques. By employing innovative approaches, the aim is to enable visitors to develop a deeper appreciation for Islamic arts.
Enriching the Visitor Experience
The project's overarching objectives revolve around enhancing the Department of Islamic Arts and enriching the experience of the museum's international visitors, who numbered approximately 10 million in 2019. Through the utilisation of cutting-edge mediation tools, the project aspires to educate visitors on how to view and interpret Islamic arts. By incorporating new media elements and reinforcing the human presence within the museum, the project strives to create an immersive and enlightening experience for all.
Partnership with the Louvre Museum
This ambitious endeavour was made possible through a fruitful partnership between Alwaleed Philanthropies "Global" and the esteemed Louvre Museum. Collaborating closely, the organisations worked together to bring the project to fruition despite the global sanitary crisis caused by Covid-19, showcasing their commitment to promoting art and cultural understanding.
2021 Accomplishments: An Enhanced Experience
In 2021, the project reached significant milestones, with the completion of its third stage: the development and opening of the "Educative and New Media Area" known as The Key Cabinet. This area offers a range of activities tailored for individuals, small groups, and larger groups, including family-oriented programs, guided tours of Islamic art, history, and culture, captivating storytelling performances, and special weekend programs.
Furthermore, the museum organised an extraordinary exhibition titled "From the Mediterranean to India: Sharing Marquetry" from May to October 2021. The exhibition showcased exceptional examples of marquetry, a technique that involves the meticulous placement of ivory, bone, metal, or precious wood on wooden frames. Highlighting one of the oldest known examples of geometric marquetry from the Islamic world dating back to the 9th century, this exhibition exemplified the beauty and craftsmanship of Islamic art.
A Reinvented Destination
After two years of dedicated efforts, the project has successfully transformed the Department of Islamic Arts into a reinvented and redesigned space. Today, visitors are welcomed to engage in special moments of encounter and exchange centred around Islamic arts, culture, civilization, and history. Despite the challenges posed by the global pandemic, Alwaleed Philanthropies "Global" and the Musée du Louvre have collectively created an unforgettable destination that celebrates the richness and beauty of Islamic arts, fostering cross-cultural appreciation and understanding.