Earlier this year Frank Gehry celebrated his 90th birthday. This does not mean, however, that the renowned architect has already started his retirement. In recent years, he has still been closely involved in the construction of his creations and he continues to send groundbreaking designs into the world. His career has not yet reached its climax, as can be seen in the images released from the future Guggenheim Museum in Abu Dhabi.
This May, the Guggenheim Foundation announced that the construction of the new museum is about to start. The first plans were unveiled back in 2007, but the opening is now – slowly, it must be said – approaching and the doors should open to the public in four years' time. So, we are happy to present to you the images that have already been released to give you an idea of the result you will be able to see with your own eyes in four years' time. Just like the other location of the foundation in New York and Bilbao, the architecture is very striking and the building itself – apart from its function as a museum – will undoubtedly become an important cultural attraction for tourists.
"We still have to wait a few years, but since the first plans were announced more than a decade ago, the opening is now really getting closer!"
The architect in charge is Frank Gehry, who with this has designed his second museum for the Guggenheim Foundation. More than twenty years ago, in 1997, the Guggenheim Museum opened in the Spanish city of Bilbao. The deconstructivist architecture – a spectacular building with different volumes and made of titanium, glass and limestone – that Gehry devised for this institute, made the building an art work as memorable – or even more – as the ones on display inside the museum for modern art.
With the new museum in Abu Dhabi, Frank Gehry also continues to work on his familiar style with buildings with unusual shapes and unique proportions (think of his Dancing House in Prague, the Walt Disney Concert Hall in LA and the Gehry Tower in Hanover). The future cultural hotspot in the capital of the United Arab Emirates will therefore consist of various gallery spaces of different sizes, as well as a library, research centre, education facilities and a state-of-the-art conservation laboratory. With a total surface of 42,000 m2, this will be the largest of the four Guggenheim locations.
The new Guggenheim Museum in Abu Dhabi will also be in good company. It is located on Saadiyat Island, which is to become the cultural hub of the city. The Louvre, designed by Jean Nouvel, opened here in 2017 and other institutes that will soon be built here are: the National Museum Zayed by Foster + Partners, a centre for performing arts by Zaha Hadid Architects and a maritime museum by Tadao Ando.