I have just had the briefest, but most exhilarating introduction to the treasures of the Louvre Abu Dhabi, first of all to Jean Nouvel’s astonishing interiors – more interesting inside than outside because you get a sense of the depth of the shallow dome and the way in which light plays through it:-
And then the briefest of walking tour introductions to the thinking behind the displays: the dream of the Universal Survey Museum, extended to cover all cultures and all religions through time, starting with antiquity:-
All religions – Christian, Muslim, Judaism, Buddhism – and, in the nineteenth century, primitive masks alongside the Impressionists. I didn’t have time to digest it, but it is certainly done with the utmost intellectual confidence and displayed beautifully and authoritatively in display cases designed by Nouvel as well, which gives it a strong sense of systematic integration.
Then, I had to leave for Sydney (the museum is closed on Mondays).