During the opening of the Fondation Louis Vuitton in October 2014, Frank Gehry said “I dream of designing a magnificent vessel for Paris that symbolises France’s profound cultural vocation.”
Building in Paris will open on May 27 at Espace Louis Vuitton Venice, Calle del Ridotto in the heart of Venice. This collaboration will retrace the story of Frank Gehry’s dream, offering an immersion into the creative world of the Canadian-American architect, who was awarded the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize in 1989. Conceived at the request of Bernard Arnault, Chairman of LVMH / Moët Hennessy / Louis Vuitton and of the Fondation Louis Vuitton, this exhibition was prepared by Frank Gehry’s teams, in close collaboration with the Fondation Louis Vuitton.
The exhibition presents a selection of scale models created during the project by the Gehry Partners Studio. The models are organised by groups to retrace studies for various aspects of the Fondation Louis Vuitton including the integration in the site, architectural programme, project design, interior spaces, the “icebergs” and the glass sails. The models are grouped together to evoke schools of fish, which is a favourite symbol of Frank Gehry. The exhibition design creates the impression that the works float in a liquid atmosphere. This dynamic movement is further enhanced through a video which offers a non-anthropometric vision of the building.
The exhibition route is a reflection of the layout of the building and is replete with detours and discoveries. Visitors are invited to immerse themselves in Frank Gehry’s project, for an enriching experience of this monument, which has enhanced the extraordinary architectural heritage of Paris and which has already attracted more than a million visitors. Initially unveiled in Paris for the inauguration of the Fondation Louis Vuitton, the exhibition has been specially redesigned by Gehry Partners for the exhibition space in Venice.
It is part of Fondation Louis Vuitton’s Beyond the Walls programme of events. As well as presenting the building’s impressive architecture, screens in the exhibition in Venice will project the rich artistic programming at Fondation Louis Vuitton.
This includes temporary exhibitions with a contemporary or historical perspective, presentations of the Fondation’s collection, as well as concerts in the Auditorium.
Intervention by Daniel Buren
As part of the exhibition, Daniel Buren has designed a special installation incorporating the glass roof of the Espace Louis Vuitton Venice. This echoes to the presentation of his temporary work, Observatory of Light, which was unveiled at the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris on May 11.