Screencap from the Louvre Abu Dhabi instagram showcasing the highway art gallery, February 16, 2018 – louvreabudhabi/Instagram
CAIRO – 16 February 2018: As part of UAE Innovation Month, the Louvre Abu Dhabi launched on February 15 what is described as the world's "first and only radio-guided highway gallery" at the E11 - Sheikh Zayed road between Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
Around ten masterpieces from the Louvre Abu Dhabi's global collection have been reproduced onto giant 8x6 meter billboards which stretch along 100 kilometers of the road. As part of a partnership with the Abu Dhabi Media Company, cars tuned into the following radios; Radio 1 FM, Classic FM and Emarat FM will receive special 30 second English/Arabic commentaries on the displays, transforming the entire road into a part of the Louvre.
According to The Art Newspaper, a statement released by the Louvre writes that "drivers will have the opportunity to experience the museum’s artworks like never before. Each piece will come alive through the vehicles’ speakers."
Each of the radio blurbs are specially written by curators from the Louvre Abu Dhabi. Amongst the pieces put on roadside display include the Sarcophagus of Egyptian Princess Henuttawy, Leonardo Da Vinci's 'La Belle Ferronniere', the first of the artist's work to be exhibited in the Emirates, an ancient two-headed Neolithic statue uncovered in Jordan, the Mari-cha Lion, Vincent Van Gogh's 1887 self-portrait, a 2,000 year old coin made in the likeness of Alexander the Great discovered in the UAE, amongst others.
According to the Emirates News Agency, Mohamed Khalifa al-Mubarak, Chairman of Abu Dhabi's Department of Culture and Tourism said, "highlighting some of the museum’s iconic masterpieces through a unique, audio-visual experience, the Louvre Abu Dhabi’s Highway Gallery makes art and culture accessible to people, beyond the museum’s walls. Bringing to life these few but captivating stories from the museum, we hope the Gallery stimulates imaginations and offers new ways to enjoy art."
The Gallery is expected to run for several weeks until the middle of March.