French president Francois Hollande praised the Louvre Abu Dhabi’s message of tolerance when he visited the UAE capital and toured Jean Nouvel’s museum.
“I have come back to this museum because it has the ambition, even within the current circumstances faced by the region, of sending out a message of dialogue, understanding and intelligence,” the president said.
“This is a universal museum that will bring together all civilisations and cultures and it will do it here in the Middle East, where there is so much trouble, and in doing so it will send out a message of tolerance, peace and protection.
“Since 2007, the UAE and France have shared the ambition to establish a museum with a universal perspective.
“Ten years later, even though there are still some months to go before the official opening, we can see this work now and I would like to congratulate the architect Jean Nouvel for achieving such a unique work of art,”
Hollande was officially received on Saadiyat Island by Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, who announced that the Louvre Abu Dhabi was set to open next year.
He visited the site with Manuel Rabate, its director, architect Nouvel and Mohammed Al Mubarak, chairman of the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority.
“Next year this museum will be completed and it will be filled not just with pieces of art but also with ideas,” Sheikh Abdullah said.
“This museum will showcase the dialogue between civilisations and we are pleased that we are moving towards a new perspective of knowledge, culture and humanity.”
Hollande was attending for the Safeguarding Endangered Cultural Heritage conference at Emirates Palace, which had its closing session yesterday.