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Louvre Abu Dhabi attracts one million visitors in first year

Louvre Abu Dhabi attracts one million visitors in first year

The art museum is reported to be unveiling the world’s most expensive painting for its anniversary celebrations

Art museum Louvre Abu Dhabi welcomed more than a million visitors in its first year, its owners said on Saturday.

UAE residents made up 40 per cent of footfall at the cultural attraction, which was built in cooperation with the French government at a reported cost of $1.3bn, with Emirati nationals in the top two.

The other 60 per cent were international visitors, led by France, Germany, China, UK, the US, India and the GCC countries.

Indians, the UAE’s largest foreign resident and visitor group, were the top Louvre guests by nationality overall.

The gallery attracted 5,000 members to its Art Club loyalty programme, 1,000 school trips, 5,000 guided tours, workshops and master classes and 115 special events including a show by British pop star Dua Lipa to celebrate its one-year anniversary on November 11.

“Louvre Abu Dhabi’s vision is to celebrate cross-cultural connections that transcend geographies and civilisations, to see humanity in a new light,” chairman of Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak.

“The diversity of Louvre Abu Dhabi’s audiences not only reflects Abu Dhabi’s multicultural society, but also illustrates how its ambition and universal narrative, which aim to create bridges between cultures and nurture dialogue between communities, appeal to many, from seasoned art enthusiasts to younger audiences and families.”

Since opening on November 11 last year, the Louvre Abu Dhabi has hosted a series of international exhibitions.

Read: UAE leaders, French President Macron open Louvre Abu Dhabi

This Autumn it has also unveiled 11 new acquisitions and significant loans from 13 French partner institutions as well as regional and international museums. The loans include Leonardo da Vinci’s La Belle Ferronnière from Musée du Louvre and Whistler’s Portrait of the Artist’s Mother from Musée d’Orsay.

Reports have indicated the gallery will unveil the world’s most expensive painting, Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi, for its anniversary after delaying the launch from September.

Read: Louvre Abu Dhabi delays unveiling of world’s most expensive painting

Among the goals of the museum has been to create jobs for Emiratis, who make up 47 per cent of workers with many more in training.

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