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The Louvre world: One place, many territories

Le Louvre monde : un lieu, des territoires

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Published on Thursday, November 17, 2016


This conference is the result of a joint reflection between the university of Paris-Sorbonne and the Louvre museum, and aims to tackle the place and the issues faced by the museum in our modern urban societies. The evolution of the institution, from the founding days of the revolutionary museum to the contemporary image of the global museum, has no doubt signalled the establishment of a heritage figure of globalisation. Set in the palace of the kings of France, at the heart of Paris’ historical and political centre, the Louvre museum has evolved over the centuries under the consecutive effects of a growing urbanisation and metropolisation, and of a globalised touristic attendance, in addition to the strong, widespread cultural expectation of city dwellers towards their museums. 

This conference endeavours to adopt a trans-disciplinary approach set in the long term, while adopting a contemporary and international perspective.


International conference University of Paris-Sorbonne / Louvre Museum


The reflection is based on three current events of the Louvre Museum: the refurbishment of the Napoleon Hall, which will end in 2016-2017 to allow visitors to access once again newly renovated and extended spaces; the opening, in summer 2016, of both the Pavillon de l’Horloge and of the Centre Dominique-Vivant-Denon (Research and Collections), the research programmes of which tackle the history of the Louvre and its development as an architectural, urban and museum space; and more generally, the next opening of “Louvre Abu Dhabi”.

Paris represents an extraordinary social, artistic and cultural breeding ground. Its connections to the Louvre palace have been, historically, at the foundations of the unity of the Kingdom of France. Then, the Republican city has served the triptych museum, nation, heritage (Poulot, 1997). Today, while the museum unfolds a global strategy that goes well beyond the national borders and questions its links with the era of new museums, new urban spaces and new touristic mobility (Fagnoni, Gravari-Barbas, 2015), does the “glocalisation” (Robertson, 1992) of heritage and tourism represent all the components of this new Parisian urban landscape?

The links between Paris and the Louvre exemplify not only a dialogue through time, but also a dialogue through space, with the city as the backdrop of the “Louvre world”. What does the city owe to the Louvre? What does the Louvre owe to the city? The scale of the structuring relationships between the museum and the city has changed in two ways. On one hand, ever since the “Grand Louvre” project initiated in 1981, the museum has extended, and has reinforced its contacts with the city with the opening of the pyramid in 1989, and of the Carrousel Gallery in 1993, creating a network of communication under and over ground that connects the museum’s activities to the city dwellers’ path. On the other hand, the relationships between the museum and the city have been mediatised since the 1990s on the global scale: the museum and the city both project themselves into international competition, the museum contributes to the city’s participation to the metropolitan competition.

The conference proposes to question the respective “territories” of the city and of the Louvre, in their dialogue, their confrontation or their conflicts, as far as the contemporary phenomena of de-territorialisation and/or re-territorialisation, in the aim of accounting for the articulation between heritage and modernity, urban and architectural space, and social spaces.

While many towns have built their development around one main museum, the chronological anchoring of the Parisian institution in the landscape of the city encourages to question this crossed trajectory between city and museum. Monument and cultural site, the Louvre museum spreads itself at every scale: neighbourhood, town, metropolis, Greater Paris, and now “outside the walls”, at the national scale with the opening of Louvre-Lens in December 2012, and at the international scale, with the soon to be open Louvre in the Arabic peninsula, in Abu Dhabi. The know and the know-how feed into this attractiveness, which is regularly repeated, adapted and amplified, and confirm the reputation of excellence of this universal museum.

The performance of the most visited museum in the world (8,52 millions visitors, 16,1 millions people registered on the website, and 2,386 millions of subscribers to its social networks in 2015) does not need to be proven, but it needs to be analysed. This attractiveness is a testimony to the sustainability of the model, of its capacity to evolve, but also of its failures, and it invites the analysis of such evolutions in a historical, geographical, social, economic and artistic perspective. The Louvre is a matter of paradigm.

The permanence of this cultural, urban, economic, heritage, touristic model, invites the appreciation of this success in terms of development strategy, of renovation and renewal,

of museological changes, of museographical adaptation, of creation of events, of politics of the publics (citizens, visitors, tourists), of adequacy to the digital age, of territorial impact.

The symposium is broken down into four sessions  and is held in two different locations :

Session 1 and Session 2:

Thursday 8 December 2016: Paris-Sorbonne University, Amphithéatre Richelieu

Session 3 and Session 4:

Friday 9 December 2016:  Louvre Museum, Auditorium


Attendance to the the following symposium « Le Louvre monde. Un lieu, des territoires » / “The Louvre world.  One place, many territories” on Thursday, December 8, and Friday, December 9 is free, but registration via the following online forms is required:


- First session

The Louvre and its territory: architecture and powers

Place of power, the Louvre bears witness to a history punctuated by its architectural development that marks the evolution of its great functions as a palace and as a museum. Philippe August’s decision at the end of the 12th century to build a stone enclosure around the capital and to protect its access with a fortress at its western end, has determined the origins of the close relationship that played out between the town and the palace (Fleury, Kruta, 2000; Hayot, 2013). During eight centuries, their joint development experienced a history made of complementary issues, sometimes conflicting (Gady, 2015; Bresc-Bautier, 2016). The New Louvre of Napoleon III marked by its ambition the attempt to achieve after four centuries the great royal project of uniting the Louvre to the Tuileries, but it also announced the major revolution of the great Haussmanian works that aimed to modernise and sanitize the urban fabric of the capital.

This session proposes to question the high points of these characteristics, in order to understand what were their impacts on the evolution of the urban landscape of the Louvre and the Tuileries estate until the 20th century. The resumption of the great State works in the 1980s marked a new turn in the city’s architectural and urban adaptation. If the Grand Louvre project was one of its undeniable successes, it seems even more urgent to study its impact today, as the city and the museum are both confronted to new challenges, in particular with the Greater Paris.

- Second session

The Louvre in the city: social uses

The Louvre museum, by its scale, number of visitors, the activity it creates daily inside and outside the walls of the institution, remains a great catalyst of energy, which benefits the national economy directly and indirectly (Greffe, 2012). Throughout its history, the Louvre has carried and inspired artistic creation in all its forms, making its neighbourhood a leading driving force. The on-going restructuration of the reception area under the pyramid invites questions about the constant challenges the museum is confronted to by its success. In the space of twenty years, the evolution of citizens’ cultural practices has considerably transformed visits to the museum. Thanks to its wealth, the cultural offer holds a power of attraction that is particularly heightened in Paris.

This session will tackle the economic and social uses of the museum, of its gardens and of its neighbourhood. The Louvre has always had a privileged location in the heart of Paris, leading artistic centre, it is also the prestigious site of musical and theatrical creations. What will be considered here, through pluri-disciplinary approaches and case studies, is the way in which the museum fully contributes to its mission of democratic openness to society. An examination of the socio-economic mechanisms that are in place today to ensure the museum operations and its development will help expanding the debate.

- Third session

The Louvre, image and representations

Paris holds a considerable place in the collective imagination. Its touristic appeal makes it a premium destination to visit. The Louvre, universal museum, has greatly contributed to entertain the myth since its conception in the Age of the Enlightenment. But to what extent has the notion of universality contributed to establish the paradigm of “museum of museums”? While its recent history actually tends to deconstruct the notion, the museum constantly reactivates its principle. From the myth to the brand, what are the issues, the risks, the limits, the perspectives offering themselves to reflection?

This third session will take a transversal look onto the question of the symbolism of the Louvre as a monument, at the heart of a neighbourhood that has fed literary and cinematographic fiction, and that has become the backdrop to collections amongst the most prestigious in the world. The Louvre holds a seemingly endless “emotional” appeal that must be put to good use. If the Mona Lisa has remained the undisputed icon of the institution for more than a century, Ieoh Ming Pei’s glass and iron pyramid has in turn become a new, modern symbol of the museum in the city. The place of architectural creation within a historical monument such as the Louvre remains a topic of debate that is necessary to tackle in the light of the most recent projects and research.

- Fourth session

The Louvre in a global world

For more than twenty years, the Louvre has been projecting itself in an increasingly digital world. A Louvre “outside the walls”, both physical (Louvre-Lens, Louvre Abu Dhabi, travelling exhibitions) and digital, becomes the creator of new territories of contacts. The Louvre is present on the five continents. It is able to embody, practically on its own, the cultural and touristic national potential. Would a connected Louvre be able to link new networks of globalised knowledge with the city and its territories? Has the notion of “metropolisation” of tourism become a reality for Paris and its heritage? The question of the future of the museum in the development of the “smart city” will also be approached.

This fourth and last session will question the new dynamics of the museum in a globalised world, and how they relate to the city. The Louvre can play a key role in the territorial reconstruction. The tension between the de-territorialisation and re-territorialisation of the museum remains to be analysed. These notions must be observed at the light of recent studies on the place given to museums, in the reconfiguration of regions as in the production of new territories, and the more or less antagonistic links that play out in relation to the Parisian or even the metropolitan territory. In this game of scales, the question of the Louvre as a “museum-town” or “museum-world” (Le Clézio, 2011) is more relevant than ever.

  •  Bresc-Bautier Geneviève (dir.), Histoire du Louvre, Paris, Ed. Musée du Louvre et Fayard, 2016.
  •  Fagnoni Edith, Gravari-Barbas Maria (dir.), Nouveaux musées, Nouvelles ères urbaines,  Nouvelles pratiques touristiques, Laval, Presses de l’Université Laval (PUL), Coll. Géographie Recherche, 2015.
  •  Fleury Michel, Kruta Venceslas, Le château du Louvre, Dijon, Ed. Faton, 2000.
  •  Gady Alexandre, Le Louvre et les Tuileries : La fabrique d’un chef d’œuvre, Paris, Ed. Le Passage, Coll. Beaux livres, 2015.
  •  Greffe Xavier, L'artiste et le marché : de la création à la valorisation. L'artiste-entreprise, Paris, Dalloz, 2012.
  •  Hayot Denis,  « Une nouvelle vision du rapport entre le Louvre et l’enceinte de Philippe Auguste à Paris », Bulletin monumental, t. 171-1, 2013, p. 3-10.
  •  Le Clézio Jean-Marie, Les musées sont des mondes, Paris, Gallimard, Coll. Livre d’Art, 2011.
  •  Poulot Dominique, Musée, Nation, Patrimoine : 1789-1815, Paris, Gallimard, 1997.
  •  Robertson Roland, Globalisation. Social Theory and Global Culture, London, Sage publications, 1992.

Scientific committee

  •  Jean-Yves ANDRIEUX, Professor Emeritus of Art History, Paris-Sorbonne University
  •  Barry Bergdoll, Professor of Architectural History, Columbia University, New York
  •  Jean-François CHARNIER, Chief Patrimony Curator, Sicientific Director of the France-Museums Agency
  •  François CHASLIN, Architect and architecture critic
  •  Géraldine DJAMENT-TRAN, Geography Lecturer, Strasbourg University
  •  Edith FAGNONI, Professor of Geography, Paris-SorbonneUniversity
  •  Alexandre Gady, Professor of Architectural History, Paris-Sorbonne University
  •  Adrien Goetz, Lecturer in Art History, Paris-Sorbonne University
  •  Maria Gravari-Barbas, Geography Professor, Paris1 – Panthéon-Sorbonne University, IREST, Unesco Chair
  •  Xavier Greffe, Economics Emeritus Professor, Paris1 – Panthéon-Sorbonne University
  •  Marianne GRIVEL,Professor, Art Histry, Paris-Sorbonne University
  •  Patrizia Ingallina, Professor, Architecte-Urban Planner, Paris-Sorbonne University
  •  Anne KREBS, Assistant department head, head of socio-economic studies and research center Dominique-Vivant Denon, Louvre Museum
  •  Isabelle Lefort, Professor of Geography, Lyon2 University
  •  Françoise Mardrus, Head of Centre Dominique-Vivant Denon Center, Louvre Museum
  •  Christine Mengin, Lecturer in Architectural History, Paris1 – Panthéon-Sorbonne University
  •  Frédéric MIGAYROU, Deputy director of MNAM, head of architecture and design department of the Pompidou Centre
  •  Zaki Nusseibeh, Vice Chairman Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage, United Arab, Abou Dhabi Art President
  •  Anne-Solène ROLLAND,Director,Department of Research and Collections, Louvre Museum
  •  Stephen Rustow, Architect, Professor Cooper Union Institute, New York
  •  Dany Sandron, Professor of Art History, Paris-SorbonneUniversity
  •  Jean-Didier URBAIN, Social and cultural anthropology, Professor, Paris-Descartes University

Organizing committee

  •  Emmanuelle DEDENON, Espaces, Nature et Culture (ENeC) - UMR CNRS-Paris IV 8185, Paris-Sorbonne University
  •  Edith FAGNONI, Professor of Geography, Paris-Sorbonne University, ENeC UMR CNRS-Paris IV 8185 et EIREST
  •  Françoise Mardrus, Manager, responsible for the Dominique-Vivant Denon Center, Louvre Museum
  •  Monica Preti, Programming staff, auditorium du Musée du Louvre


Jeudi 8 décembre 2016

Université Paris-Sorbonne, Amphithéâtre Richelieu

Ouverture du Colloque

09h : Accueil

09h15 : Ouverture officielle du colloque par le Président de Paris-Sorbonne, Barthélémy Jobert, et le Président-directeur du Louvre, Jean-Luc Martinez

09h30 : Introduction et problématique des deux journées de colloque par Edith FAGNONI et Françoise MARDRUS

Première session : Le Louvre et son territoire : architecture et pouvoirs

Président de séance : Philippe LORENTZProfesseur d’Histoire de l’Art, Université Paris-Sorbonne

  • 10h : Dany SANDRONProfesseur d’Histoire de l’Art, Université Paris-Sorbonne ; Denis HAYOTDocteur en Histoire de l’Art ; Florian MEUNIER, Conservateur en chef du patrimoine, département des Objets d’art, Musée du Louvre, 
    • La ville s'entrouvre autour du Louvre : le château et Paris XIIe-XVe siècle
  • 10h45 : Guillaume Fonkenell,Conservateur du patrimoine, Musée national de la Renaissance, Le roi et Dieu, implantation et usages de lieux de culte autour du Louvre
  • 11h15 : Jean-Philippe garric, professeur d’Histoire de l’Architecture, Université Paris1 – Panthéon-Sorbonne, 
    • Réunir le Louvre aux Tuileries, un projet pour le cœur de Paris (1795-1848)
  • 11H45 : Stephen Rustow, Architecte-Urbaniste, Professeur, Cooper Union Institute, New York et responsable de l’Agence Museoplan LLC, 
    • Haussmann writ small : le Grand Louvre de Pei, un exemple d’urbanisme du XIXe siècle

12h15 - 12h45 : Echange avec le public

12h45 : Pause déjeuner

Deuxième session : Le Louvre dans la cité : usages sociaux

Présidente de séance : Christine MENGINMaître de Conférences en Histoire de l’Architecture, Université Paris1 –Panthéon-Sorbonne

  • 14h15 : Barry Bergdoll, Professeur d’Histoire de l’Architecture, Département d’Histoire de l’Art, Columbia University, New York, 
    • Des Palais aux forums culturels : les musées d’art européens au temps des expositions universelles
  • 14h45 : Emmanuelle HERAN,Conservateur en chef du patrimoine, responsable des collections des jardins du Louvre et des Tuileries, sous-direction des jardins, Direction patrimoine architectural et jardins, Musée du Louvre, 
    • Plaidoyer pour une histoire des usages du jardin des Tuileries : croisement et perspectives
  • 15h15 : Adrien GOETZ, Ecrivain, Maître de Conférences en Histoire de l’Art, Université  Paris-Sorbonne, 
    • Le Louvre un grand magasin parmi d’autre ? Du Bon Marché au Grand Louvre : vitrines, nouveautés, verrières et escalators
  • 15h45 : Mélanie Roustan, Ethnologue, Maître de Conférence, Muséum national d’histoire naturelle, 
    • Usagers du Louvre ou les sens du musée
  • 16h15 : Anne KREBS, Chef de service adjointe, responsable des études et recherche socio-économiques, Centre Dominique –Vivant Denon, Musée du Louvre, 
    • Visibilité ou invisibilité. Le Louvre comme espace social et symbolique

17h - 18h : Table ronde : Paris, le Louvre et ses territoires proches : perspectives et évolutions

Modérateur : Philippe Meyer,Journaliste

Bertrand Lemoine,Architecte, Directeur de recherche au CNRS ; Isabelle BACKOUCHE ,HDR, Directrice des Etudes en histoire, EHESS, centre de recherches historiques ; Chris YOUNESphilosophe, Professeure à l’École Spéciale d’Architecture ; Michel GOUTALArchitecte en chef des Monuments historiques en charge du Palais du LouvrePhilippe BélavalPrésident du Centre des Monuments nationauxAnne-Laure BEATRIXDirectrice, Direction des Relations extérieures, Musée du Louvre

18h30 - 19h15 :Intermède musical - Concert en images

Vendredi 9 décembre 2016

Musée du Louvre, Auditorium

09h : Accueil

Troisième session : Le Louvre, image et représentations

Présidente de séance : Dominique de Font-Réaulx, Directrice du Musée national Eugène Delacroix

  • 09h30 : Alexandre GADY, Professeur d’Histoire de l’Architecture, Université Paris-Sorbonne, 
    • Vérité monarchique, mensonge républicain ? Le mythe des origines du musée du Louvre (1775-1793)
  • 10h : Dominique POULOT, Professeur, Histoire des Civilisations, Université Paris1 – Panthéon-Sorbonne, 
    • Le Louvre au centre de la République
  • 10h30 : Françoise MARDRUS, Chef de service, responsable du Centre Dominique-Vivant Denon, Musée du Louvre ; Annette LOESEKE, Professeure, Museum Studies, New York University - Berlin, 
    • Paris-Berlin : le Louvre et l’Ile des musées, deux modèles à l’épreuve de l’histoire
  • 11h : Maria GARCIA-HERNANDEZ, Maître de Conférences en Géographie, Université Complutense de Madrid ; Carmen MINGUEZ, Maître de Conférences en Géographie, Université Complutense de Madrid, 
    • Le Musée du Prado et Madrid : une approche culturelle et touristique à différentes échelles
  • 11h30 : Natacha PERNAC, Directrice des études, Ecole du Louvre, Maître de Conférences, Université Paris-Ouest Nanterre, 
    • Le Louvre au cinéma : monde, modèle, contre-modèle

12h - 12h30 : Echange avec le public

12h45 : Pause déjeuner

14h : Accueil

Quatrième session : Le Louvre dans un monde global

Présidente de séance : Isabelle LEFORT, Professeure en Géographie, Université Lumière-Lyon II

  • 14h30 : Edith FAGNONI, Professeure en Géographie, Université Paris-Sorbonne ; Maria GRAVARI-BARBAS, Professeure en Géographie, Université Paris1 – Panthéon-Sorbonne, IREST,  Chaire Unesco, 
    • Le Louvre XXL. Un lieu, des territoires
  • 15h00 : Gaël Chareyron, Ecole Supérieure d'Ingénieur Léonard de Vinci ; Anne HERTZOG, Maître de Conférences en Géographie, Université de Cergy-Pontoise ; Sébastien Jacquot, Maître de Conférences en Géographie, Université Paris1 – Panthéon-Sorbonne, 
    • Le Louvre dans un monde global : connexions, circulations, projections
  • 15h30 : Simon TEXIER, Professeur d’Histoire de l’Architecture et de l’Urbanisme contemporain, Université Picardie-Jules Verne, 
    • Le Louvre Abou Dhabi : une architecture d’exception dans un territoire protéiforme
  • 16h00 : Alexandre Kazerouni, Politologue, chercheur à l’École normale supérieure, postdoctorant de la Chaire Moyen-Orient Méditerranée de l’Université de recherche Paris Sciences et Lettres, 
    • Le Louvre et la mondialisation à Abou Dhabi : la particularisation de l’universalisme
  • 16h30 : Cécile BRESC-MARIANI, Numismate, Maître de Conférences en histoire médiévale, Université Paris-Sorbonne. Ancien Conservateur des monnaies musulmanes au British Museum et ancien Conservateur au Musée d’Art Islamic de Doha, 
    • À Doha, résolument voulue capitale culturelle du Moyen Orient, comment le Musée d'Art Islamic (MIA) peut-il « inspirer le futur » ?
  • 17h : Frédéric MIGAYROU, Directeur adjoint du MNAM, Chef du service architecture et design du Centre Pompidou, 
    • Architecture du musée pervasif

17h30 - 18h30 : Table ronde : Le musée-monde et la ville de demain

Modérateur : François CHASLINArchitecte et critique d’architecture

Jean NouvelArchitecte (Atelier Jean Nouvel, Paris)Jean-Louis SubileauUrbaniste (Une fabrique de la ville, Paris)Thomas DubuissonArchitecte (Agence Search, Paris)Giandomenico ROMANELLIDirecteur honoraire de la Fondation Musei civici,VeniseGabi DOLFF-BONEKAEMPERPr. Dr. en Histoire de l’Architecture, Technische Universität, Institut für Stadt und Regionalplanung (ISR), Berlin


  • Auditorium - Musée du Louvre
    Paris, France (75001)


  • Thursday, December 08, 2016
  • Friday, December 09, 2016


  • Louvre, territoire, architecture, représentation, musée, patrimoine


  • Emmanuelle Dedenon
    courriel : emmanuelle [dot] dedenon [at] cnrs [dot] fr

Information source

  • Emmanuelle Dedenon
    courriel : emmanuelle [dot] dedenon [at] cnrs [dot] fr


CC0-1.0 This announcement is licensed under the terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal.

To cite this announcement

« The Louvre world: One place, many territories », Conference, symposium, Calenda, Published on Thursday, November 17, 2016, https://calenda.org/383973

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