Earlier this month, Abu Dhabi’s much-awaited “universal museum,” the Louvre Abu Dhabi designed by Pritzker Prize-winner Jean Nouvel, was opened to the public. After several years of delays and problems including accusations of worker rights violations, revisions in economic strategies, and regional turmoil, the completion of the museum is a feat in itself. Critics, supporters, naysayers, artists, economists, and human rights agencies, have all closely followed its shaky progress, but now that it’s finally open, reviews of the building are steadily pouring in.
Read on to find out how critics have responded to Nouvel’s work so far.
With its massive, intricate roof and man-made pools and canals, Ateliers Jean Nouvel's astonishingly complex Louvre Abu Dhabi was a project 10-years in the making before finally debuting to the public earlier this month. But even if the project missed it's original completion date, it certainly wasn't for lack of trying – and that's proven in this new video timelapse from EarthCam.
The video captures the 8-year-long construction process from groundbreaking to completion, showing the museum as it came together from a variety of perspectives, including how the roof was assembled in mid-air before being gently lowered into place, and the enormous effort of earth moving to build the unique site.
Following ten years of multinational collaboration between France and the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, Jean Nouvel's Louvre Abu Dhabi opens this week to the public. Located on Saadiyat Island and surrounded by the sea, twenty three permanent galleries and exhibition spaces, a Children's Museum, an auditorium, and a research center are connected by waterfront promenades which weave beneath the building's iconic dome.
New renderings have been revealed of Jean Nouvel’s first Miami project, Monad Terrace, as construction begins on site. Designed by Ateliers Jean Nouvel in collaboration with Kobi Karp, the highrise project is set to rise on West Avenue in the premier South Beach district of Miami Beach, setting a new standard of building integrity and climate resilience for the city.
The Ateliers Jean Nouvel-designed LouvreAbu Dhabi is ready to make its grand first appearance, as the museum announced it will open to the public on November 11th.
Opening celebrations will take advantage of the unique structure, with a series of concerts, performances and events planned for a variety of spaces beneath the building’s 180-meter geometric dome. Comprised of nearly 8,000 arabic motif stars, the steel pattern will filter sunlight into a dramatic ‘rain of light’ on the museum’s walls and floors that calls to mind shadows created by overlapping palm trees.
The winner of the Wolf Prize in 2005 and the Pritzker of 2008, French architect Jean Nouvel has attempted to design each of his projects without any preconceived notions. The result is a variety of projects that, while strikingly different, always demonstrate a delicate play with light and shadow as well as a harmonious balance with their surroundings. It was this diverse approach that led the Pritzker Prize Jury in their citation to characterize Nouvel as primarily "courageous" in his "pursuit of new ideas and his challenge of accepted norms in order to stretch the boundaries of the field."
All planned for completion no later than 2022, the new buildings would target international businessmen and researchers, especially those displaced following the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union.
Ateliers Jean Nouvel and Australian firm Architectus’ 70-story mixed-use tower, 383 La Trobe Street, will be the newest addition to the Melbourne skyline, after its approval by the Victoria Department of Planning.
Recently, Shanghai organized an international competition for the new Art Museum of Pudong. The site of the project is located at a prominent spot on the tip of Pudong’s Lujiazui CBD area directly below the Oriental Pearl Tower. Looking across Huangpu River from the Bund, the iconic skyline of Lujiazui has been such a symbolic image of modern Shanghai that any addition or alteration to this image is extremely sensitive. So the site has been deliberately left vacant for years, awaiting a significant cultural institute and meaningful contribution to the urban life at the megapolis.
Jean Nouvel has unveiled the design of his latest project: a 22-story tower located near Avenida Paulista in São Paulo. The skyscraper, dubbed Rosewood Tower, is part of Cidade Matarazzo, a 27,000-square-meter site containing historic buildings that once made up the Filomena Matarazzo maternity hospital. A heritage-listed site, the Allard Group is restoring the buildings and creating a cultural center, of which Nouvel’s new tower will be a central component.
Set to contain a hotel as well as residential units, Nouvel’s tower is designed to be a vertical continuation of the local landscape. Thus, the nearly 100-meter-tall tower develops at different levels, forming terraces and large gardens with small and medium-sized trees.
Jean Nouvel has won approval for "Tours DUO" in Paris. The mixed-use project, planned to rise on a former industrial site on the edge of the Seine in the Paris Rive Gauche district, aims to become a "top business real estate destination" and neighborhood amenity. Its two towers will house an eight-story hotel, office space, retail, a top floor restaurant-bar, gardens and green terraces, as well as a "renewed access" to the Seine.
Sixty years ago Arne Jacobsen designed the Series 7 chair - the "Sevener." Unlike many other Jacobsen designs, the chair was not designed for a specific use, leaving it to interpretation. In light of the chair's 60th anniversary, Fritz Hansen commissioned "seven cool architects" - BIG, Zaha Hadid, Jean Nouvel, Snøhetta and three others - to recreate the chair. The results, after the break.
Norman Foster, Jean Nouvel and Rem Koolhaas are competing to design the new Western Australian Museum (WA Museum) in the Perth Cultural Center. As The West Australian reports, the leading architects are part of three shortlisted consortiums being considered to develop the new $428 million project. Each team is currently working with the government on their proposals. A team is expected to be announced later this year. The museum is slated to open in 2020.
The complete list of the shortlisted teams include...
Recently, Pritzker Prize winner Jean Nouvel has been in the news for all the wrong reasons; after his Philharmonie de Paris opened ahead of schedule in January this year, he has been involved in a very public battle to have his name removed from the project to distance himself from the "aberrational decisions" of the client. In this interview, originally published by the Huffington Post as "Interview With Jean Nouvel," Elena Cué sits down with Nouvel in his Paris Studio to talk about his inspirations, the phenomenon of architectural eroticism, and why he is often disappointed with his completed works.
Elena Cué: The anti-Le Corbusier architect Claude Parent was your mentor when you were starting out at the age of 21. Please tell me about what meeting him meant for your career. You were actively involved in May 68 with a radical stance against the educational model of the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris. What were the things you demanded?
Jean Nouvel: I felt that his studio was one of the most creative at that time. He and his partner, Paul Virilio, created a space where a new approach to architecture could evolve. Paul became a very well-known philosopher and thinker of the time. I joined the intellectual rebellion of "May 68" and it certainly impacted my architectural style in terms of its criticism of the way in which French cities have traditionally been constructed. Later on, I joined with them to create the "March 1976 Movement," which demanded that the design of French cities no longer follow the same traditional model. Soon after, the architecture trade union was formed. It was a time of intellectual excitement.
Jean Nouvel has lost a court battle aimed to remove his name from the newly opened Philharmonie de Paris. As The Telegraph reports, Nouvel claimed that the £280 million concert hall was inaugurated prematurely and parts of the building was "sabotaged" in doing so, thus believing it to be morally inapt from him be associated with the building.
"The architecture is martyred, the details sabotaged," he said in a Le Monde editorial, "so taxpayers will have to pay, once again, to correct these aberrational decisions."