In the small French region of Nord Pas de Calais, the Louvre Museum of Paris has opened a new museum called Louvre-Lens. It has always been a sleepy region dependent on mining but has, of late, turned into spotlight for cultural events and art.
It is a breathtaking aluminum and glass building that stands in stark contrast to its surroundings and hosted a well-attended costumed ball over the past winter season. The region’s citizenry has welcomed the opportunity for culture as the region has never had such offerings in its history. The museum was built over two old mine shafts by Japanese design firm Sanaa and is perched on a fifty foot high mountain of slag that has been left over from the old mining days.
The main gallery features walls of aluminum with 205 works embraced within its 32, 000 square feet. The 205 pieces are rotated out on a regular basis so there is always something new at the Louvre-Lens. The art displayed can be anything from a legendary Rubens to ancient Hindu art. For several months, Leonardo da Vinci’s final work entitled The Virgin and Child with Saint Anne was on display. Rubens will be back for a full scale encore from May 22- September 23.
The Louvre-Lens is looking to gather in 700,000 visitors by years end and has entertained nearly half that total already. The museum will continue to host balls and music festivals as well as concerts and even karaoke nights.
Source: Travel NY Times