Louvre Abu Dhabi will host five new major exhibitions over the course of its upcoming 2023-2024 cultural season, starting this summer.
Picturing the Cosmos (18 July 2023 - June 2025), at Louvre Abu Dhabi’s Children’s Museum, will take little ones on a journey through representations of space in art. Letters of Light (13 September 2023 – 14 January 2024) will explore the Holy Books of the three Abrahamic religions – the Quran, the Christian Bible, and the Hebrew Bible (Tanakh), while Cartier, Islamic Inspiration and Modern Design; (15 November 2023 – 24 March 2024), will highlight the influence of Islamic art on Cartier’s iconic designs.
Louvre Abu Dhabi Art Here 2023 (21 November 2023 – February 2024) will showcase works by artists shortlisted for the third Richard Mille Art Prize, and Fables from East and West: from Kalila wa Dimna to the Fables of La Fontaine (20 March 2024 – 14 July 2024), will showcase the influence of animal fables in the ancient world.
The 2023-2024 cultural season includes the opening of five major exhibitions, Letters of Light; Cartier, Islamic Inspiration and Modern Design; Picturing the Cosmos; in the Children Museum and Louvre Abu Dhabi Art Here 2023, Fables from East and West: from Kalila wa Dimna to the Fables of La Fontaine.
The upcoming exhibitions will further Louvre Abu Dhabi’s mission to showcase stories of artistic and cultural connections around the globe, as well as provide a platform for local and regional artists to showcase their talent. To engage and connect with its community, the museum will also offer a range of cultural programming and events, such as performances, masterclasses, health and wellness offerings, curatorial talks, and more. Information on the cultural programme will be announced soon.
Manuel Rabaté, Director of Louvre Abu Dhabi, said: “As a universal museum, our mission has always centred around providing an inclusive and engaging space where a plethora of voices, ideas, and stories are told. From our exhibitions to new artworks, to novel and returning experiences – there is much to look forward to this cultural season at Louvre Abu Dhabi. This season is a testament to our enduring commitment to serve our community, who are at the heart of all we do.
“And as part of our dedication to serving our community, we are delighted to be working on a number of cultural initiatives and programmes that will allow our audiences to deepen their understanding and appreciation of arts and culture, broaden their perspectives of the world and peoples around us, whilst also bolstering the museum’s inspiring, participatory platform for encounter and exchange.”
Dr. Souraya Noujaim, Scientific, Curatorial and Collections Management Director of Louvre Abu Dhabi said: "Since our inception, we have always celebrated stories of cultural connections, providing visitors of all ages and backgrounds with an opportunity to explore a world of wonder through art. This cultural season, we are offering a diverse range of exhibitions and programmes that celebrate the shared creativity of humanity.
“These include new acquisitions in our permanent galleries, by artists as Modern Art Master Pablo Picasso, an immersive experience for children to discover the infinity of space through art, a retrospective on the rich history of sacred texts from three monotheistic religions, an exploration of the influence of Islamic arts on Cartier's design, a platform showcasing the talent and work of emerging artists in the region, and an opportunity to discover the evolution of a prominent literary genre.”
Picturing the Cosmos, Louvre Abu Dhabi’s Children’s Museum
18 July 2023 – June 2025
Louvre Abu Dhabi’s latest ‘edutaining’ children’s exhibition will be Picturing the Cosmos, taking children on a journey through the infinity of space via its various representations in art across time and cultures.
The exhibition will address questions, such as ‘Why have humans always been fascinated by the cosmos? ‘and ‘How has the sky been a source of inspiration and imagination through ages?’.
Children will embark on a mission to develop their observational and analytical skills needed to become a space explorer.
Letters of Light
13 September 2023 – 14 January 2024
Held in partnership with Bibliothèque nationale de France and France Muséums, the Letters of Light exhibition will spotlight the Holy Books of the three Abrahamic religions – the Quran, the Christian Bible (Old and New Testaments) and the Hebrew Bible (Tanakh). Curated by Laurent Héricher, Chief Curator, Head of Oriental Manuscripts Department, Bibliothèque nationale de France and Dr. Souraya Noujaim, Scientific, Curatorial and Collections Management Director, Louvre Abu Dhabi, the exhibition will explore the historical context in which the holy books emerged, their associated scholarly, talismanic, and mystical practices and their essential role in intellectual and artistic history. Fostering a dialogue between the monotheistic traditions while respecting the unique characteristics of each, there will be an emphasis on the universal nature of the biblical, evangelical, and Quranic messages and the ethical dimension they possess by highlighting episodes and figures that are shared by all three.
Cartier, Islamic Inspiration and Modern Design
15 November 2023 to 24 March 2024
Cartier, Islamic Inspiration and Modern Design exhibition is co-organized with the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, the Musée du Louvre, France Muséums, with the support of Cartier. This exhibition is based on a project that was initially conceived and co-organized by the Dallas Museum of Art and the Musée des Arts Décoratifs titled Cartier and Islamic Art: In Search of Modernity. The exhibition will highlight the influence of the Islamic arts on Cartier’s design from the beginning of the 20th century to the present day. Co-curated by Évelyne Possémé, Former Chief Curator of Ancient and Modern Jewellery at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs, and Judith Hénon-Raynaud, Curator and Deputy Director of the Department of Islamic Art at the Musée du Louvre, the exhibition will present more than 500 pieces, from jewellery and masterpieces of Islamic art to drawings, books, photographs, and archival documents.
This edition at Louvre Abu Dhabi is a reinterpretation of a travelling exhibition that was initially displayed in 2022 at Musée des Arts Décoratifs and Dallas Museum of Art, with the support of Cartier.
Louvre Abu Dhabi Art Here 2023
21 November 2023 – February 2024
Louvre Abu Dhabi and Swiss watchmaking brand Richard Mille will hold the third edition of Louvre Abu Dhabi Art Here exhibition and the accompanying Richard Mille Art Prize, under the theme ‘Transparencies’ and curated by Maya El Khalil. Taking place outdoors and under the dome for the first time, Art Here 2023 will provide artists the opportunity to present their work within one of the most extraordinary museum settings and one winner will be selected to win the Richard Mille Art Prize. Entries are welcome from UAE and GCC-based contemporary artists, with the open call for submissions ending on 31 May 2023.
For more information on the Richard Mille Art Prize, visit link.
Fables from East and West: from Kalila wa Dimna to the Fables of La Fontaine
20 March 2024 – 14 July 2024
The literary genre of animal fables, which first originated in India and Greece in the first century BCE, was spearheaded by Ibn al-Muqaffa‘ in the Arab-Islamic world and Aesop in the Greco-Roman world. Over millennia, fables have continually transformed and adapted from one language to another, resulting in many new works being created in both the East and West. Organised in partnership with Bibliothèque nationale de France and France Muséums, Fables from East and West will examine the roots and evolution of this genre through a showcase of illustrated manuscripts, paintings, contemporary works and more.