Creation of the Fondation Louis Vuitton
The project has taken some 13 years to carry out, but the result is spectacular. Right next to the Jardin d’Acclimatation, the brand new Fondation Louis Vuitton rises up in a cloud of impressive glass architecture designed by American architect Frank Gehry. The building resembles a ship in full sail and is located in the heart of the Bois de Boulogne.
Gehry, who designed the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, has succeeded in creating a building that stands 46 metres high. Like many of his creations, the construction has neither a facade nor a roof in the traditional sense of the terms. It is composed more of flowing shapes that envelope the interior spaces designed to showcase cultural collections and exhibitions. The Californian architect used 6,000 m² of curved glass panels attached to a steel frame to provide the covering. A team of architects worked intensively on the feasibility of the project, registering some thirty patents in the process!
Gehry said that « when Bernard Arnault suggested that he come and meet him in Paris, he told him nothing at first. He took him to the Jardin d’acclimatiation and then spoke of his project. (Gehry who had lived in Paris in the 1950s knew the city but not that particular place). He said that he felt quite emotional thinking about French writer Proust walking along the pathways there. He said that he realized then that this was a historic place ».
12,000 m² devoted to art
The LVMH group, which supports artistic creation, now has a first-class flagship with a surface area of 12,000 m². Some of this is used to show a selection of works from the Foundation’s collection and from Bernard Arnault’s private collection. In addition to this ‘permanent’ collection, the Foundation also hosts two temporary exhibitions every year as well as musical events in the auditorium.
Art/Afrique, Le nouvel atelier
Until 4 September 2017
Contemporary art in Africa is rich and diverse. This summer, the Fondation Louis Vuitton contributes to its renown outside the African continent with three simultaneous exhibitions under the name ‘Art/Afrique, Le nouvel atelier’.
The first titled ‘Insiders’ invites visitors to discover a selection of works by some fifteen or so sub-Saharan artists from the eclectic collection of Jean Pigozzi. These works, gathered between 1989 and 2009, are invaluable in their artistic scope and diversity.
The second ‘Being There’ highlights the dynamic South-African art scene. From photography to installations through digital art, painting and embroidery, the exhibition highlights several generations of artists, from the Apartheid years to the early 2000s.
Finally, alongside these two exhibitions, the Fondation Louis Vuitton presents a wide selection of modern and contemporary African works from its own collections.
‘Art/Afrique’ is therefore a unique opportunity to see works by African artists of today.
Fondation Louis Vuitton, Bois de Boulogne
Open to the public from 27 October 2014
8, avenue du Mahatma Gandhi, 75116 Paris