If you are bored of louvre museum tours in the Paris city, head up north traveling 200km to reach the magnificent Louvre-Lens museum. It is a new wing of the famous Louvre museum and let you witness the metropolitan side of Paris. The Louvre-Lens museum displays the rich cultural tradition of France, by reaffirming a national identity.
It was on December 4, 2012, that then French president François Hollande inaugurated the Louvre-Lens museum in northern France. It brought about a mixed response from urban art press.
Captures Raw France
The place at which the museum stands once used to have the tallest heaps of slag in the whole of Europe. Moreover, the place used to house a huge working class. The once vital trade connections between European capitals are well proved here, as the northern borders of France neighboring Netherlands and Belgium, and the channel tunnel linking Great Britain is in geographic proximity.
A former site for the coal mining industry, Nord-Pas de Calais is comparatively less celebrated space in Northern France, even though it is cultural vital. It is not anymore a mere spot of transit but has elevated into a popular tourist location.
Birth of the Concept
Way back in 2003, so as to serve the cultural and artistic concerns of the whole nation, an idea of building an entire museum somewhere beyond the French capital was raised.
The Very First Lens
The Minister of Culture invited a tender for the establishment of such a Lens Project throughout France to which the small town of Nord-Pas de Calais responded. Around 120 candidates from around the world competed in an architectural design contest, of which a Japanese architect SANAA was selected to design the Lourve-Lens.
A Peek at the Museum
Fulfilling the vision of director Henri Loyrette, the museum showcases artworks in their chronological order along the length of striking ‘Galerie du Temps’. This makes the dream of the poet Charles Peguy that the museum should offer the ‘long and visible progression of humanity’ true.
Louvre Lens museum has a massive collection of artifacts and houses around 200 of them. They comprise of works from Eastern Antiquities collection, Greek, Egyptian, Roman, Islamic, Etruscan, and other art departments. Besides, the greatest masterpieces and artists at the Louvre Museum will be exhibited at Lens.
Several artistic exhibitions were conducted at the museum, which debuted with ‘The Europe of Rubens’ in 2013. Everything related to Rubens with their sculptures, drawings, and other decorative arts were displayed in ‘The Europe of Rubens’ exhibition.