Partitions, a sequential arrangement of the tour, the addition of colour
Among the fundamental constituents of the Louvre-Lens, the choice of major exhibitions is essential to the project's success. For this reason an entire gallery of nearly 1800 m2 is devoted solely to this purpose. This gallery extends westward from the reception hall for a distance of 80 metres. At its westernmost end, it can be opened into the theatre space of La Scène.
The architecture of the Temporary Exhibition Gallery mirrors that of the Grande Galerie, by its location at the opposite end, by its arrangement all in one piece and by its overhead lighting. Its less monumental proportions and its interior walls left deliberately blank do however distinguish it clearly from the Grande Galerie. The vast open space thus created allows a new spatial arrangement to be designed for each exhibition. For the inaugural exhibition, a museographic design that was clearly different to that of the Galerie du Temps was chosen, using partitions and a sequential arrangement of the tour and the addition of colour.
Two major temporary exhibitions of international importance will be held in this gallery every year, with the aim of drawing a wide regional, national and international audience.
The programme for these exhibitions will be decided in close cooperation with the programmes of the museums of the Nord-Pas de Calais region and of the Louvre in Paris. The coherence of the programme between the Louvre and the Louvre-Lens is the very basis of the scientific project and the same museographic quality will be offered with different programmes. The choice of curators and subjects is of key importance and is in line with the Louvre museum's tradition of excellence. The quality requirement goes hand in hand with the aim of creating exhibitions accessible to visitors of all kinds. Major exhibitions will be programmed twice a year, the first in the summer and the second in the winter. They will be designed so that exhibitions highlighting a specific period or place alternate with themes that take a transverse look across art history. The summer programme will attract tourists to the region, especially from abroad, and will ensure that the Louvre-Lens becomes part of the circuit of major summer exhibitions. By opening in June it also offers an opportunity for end-of-year outings to be organised for local schoolchildren. The summer-winter exhibitions are oriented towards presenting an artistic period or a civilisation with a more educational dimension.
The opening exhibition will be on the Renaissance.
The following exhibitions will be on "Rubens and Europe", and then on the Etruscans, thereby placing the Louvre-Lens at the heart of cultural events across Europe's regions.