Seeing Past the Rain of Light

Louvre Abu Dhabi and the UAE Art Scene

by Elizabeth Derderian | published December 12, 2017

On November 11, 2017, the Louvre Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates opened its doors to the public, nearly ten and a half years after the initial announcement of the project. Social media was awash with pictures of visitors in the rays of sun filtering into the main atrium, in what the museum’s architect, Jean Nouvel, called a “rain of light.” The fact that a significant repercussion of the museum’s establishment was felt long before it opened was lost in the flurry of self-portraits taken under the signature dome. The 2007 declaration of plans for the museum triggered important changes in the Gulf art scene.

Airstrikes Against the Patriarchy

by Amanda Ufheil-Somers | published September 26, 2014 - 7:46pm

The media sometimes has trouble conjuring a feel-good story out of an airstrike, but not now. In the last few days, news outlets across the world have fallen all over themselves to champion Maryam al-Mansouri—the first female combat pilot in the United Arab Emirates—who flew in a nighttime sortie over Syria on September 22.

Boom, Bust and Boom in Dubai

by Pete Moore | published June 9, 2014 - 10:28am

It’s easy to be critical of Dubai and its socioeconomic model.