Louis Vuitton Foundation: 8 Years of Construction with an 8 Digit Price Tag

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A cloud of glass capping an iceberg of concrete. It is on the edge of the Bois de Boulogne; the face and anatomy of the Louis Vuitton Foundation for Creation. Since the construction of the Pyramid of the Louvre, this is probably the most grand architectural statement in the capital. The patron Bernard Arnault, along with the architect Frank Gehry, collaborated for the project and since its start, has not missed a fairy godmother, nor audacity. It’s opening on October 20, 2014, which has panicked Paris. Meanwhile, the project has run into the in eight figures in its budget.

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Eight years have passed since the launch of the project and the company, which was founded in October 2006. The inauguration will take place on October 20, while the general public will have access seven days later in the wake of the FIAC. The first exhibition will showcase the architectural project itself.

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It was constructed in an old place where bowling took place, the Bois de Boulogne, which closed a decade ago. Goodbye old waxed floors, hello to the NEW. This temple of art has within it an auditorium, a library and a restaurant. The land is subject to a long lease, and the building ownership will revert back to the city of Paris in 50 years.

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Twelve huge glass walls give lightness and dynamism to the whole on the building. There are thousands of curved glass panels; these are designed to be like petals while moving showing the building’s majesty.

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Eleven exhibition halls and open spaces dedicated to contemporary art will distribute the collections and temporary exhibitions. Works will also be carried out specifically for the foundation, according to the will of Bernard Arnault.

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Thirty patents were filed, each the result of technological prowess as well as the complexity of the building. The know-how of the automotive industry were particularly sought after.

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There are 700 workers, led by the best engineers. The company Vinci was used for the structure and Eiffage for glass. That is without even counting the employees from engineering firms involved in the project.

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From his 85 years of experience, Frank Gehry certainly did not endlessly modernize the urban landscape. After the construction of the Guggenheim, he noticed Museum Bilbao; the Vuitton Foundation let him express a futuristic ideas. His vision also involves ecology; the foundation of the building is of high-quality, environmental.

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The initial budget of €100 million, funded entirely by the LVMH group, has not failed to be burdened by delays and procedural constraints. The recognition of the utility of the book has only allowed the resumption of work and opening schedule. This public utility building is much more than a critical success for a cultural initiative.

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Thank you to Jourdan Vannier for writing this article!

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