Louvre Abu Dhabi has commissioned two international artists to create site-specific artworks which would be displayed in the museum when it opens in 2017. ‘Museum city’ by Jean Nouvel with its streets, plazas and waterways would feature artworks exhibited both inside the galleries as well as outside. Giuseppe Penone and Jenny Holzer have worked closely with the Louvre Abu Dhabi team to develop sculptures and installations that reflect the universal stories of the museum and are in harmony with the iconic building. These are the first of a number of commissions for Louvre Abu Dhabi, which through a diversity of artists reflect the universal nature of the museum.HE Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi), said, “In line with Louvre Abu Dhabi’s ambition to reflect the universal nature of art making, we have commissioned contemporary works by the internationally renowned artists, Giuseppe Penone and Jenny Holzer. The artists’ works are inspired by the museum’s iconic architecture and diverse stories and play an important role in connecting the cultures and civilisations of our past with the relevant ongoing conversations and artistic practices of today.”Italian artist Giuseppe Penone, one of the youngest members of the Arte Povera movement, has created Germination, a four-part installation that displays the artist’s fascination with the use of organic materials, such as trees, to highlight the connection between man, nature and art. The central element of the installation is Penone’s Leaves of Light, a vast bronze tree that interacts with Jean Nouvel’s architectural design through mirrors placed on its branches reflecting the ‘Rain of Light.’ Soaring towards the dome covering the museum’s outdoor walkways, the tree becomes a symbol of life, as shared by all cultures.Penone commented, “The artworks that I have developed for Louvre Abu Dhabi aim to inscribe themselves in the place, underscoring aspects of its architectural form and content. The pieces that make up Germination echo the museum’s universal spirit.”American artist Jenny Holzer, known for her artwork which has been widely exhibited at international exhibitions, has created three engraved stone walls of texts from important historical sources from across the world. These walls would feature excerpts from Ibn Khaldun’s Muqaddimah from the Atif Efendi Library collection in Istanbul, the Mesopotamian bilingual (Acadian / Sumerian) Creation Myth tablet from the Vorderasiatisches Museum in Berlin, and the 1588 annotated edition of Michel de Montaigne’s Essais from the Bordeaux Municipal Library.Holzer stated, “It’s delightful to work on this significant new museum. Louvre Abu Dhabi set an ambitious agenda for itself and raises lively questions about museums and civilisations. It’s a privilege and a challenge to realise an installation that joins Jean Nouvel’s architecture and that speaks with the fantastic works the museum will display. I made my walls in close relation to Jean Nouvel’s building, which I saw as an ideal archaic village under a most beautiful futuristic sky dome.”Works from the permanent collection would be displayed alongside these commissions in the outdoor areas of the museum. Recreating the atmosphere of an Islamic courtyard, an Ottoman octagonal fountain and pavement (18th Century, Damascus, Syria) would be integrated in a contemporary scenography flooded with light.