HUMBLEBAEK, DENMARK.- The Louisiana Museum of Modern Art presents Jean Nouvel – Louisiana Manifesto, on view through September 18. Jean Nouvel is the most famous member of the generation that has been called the New Wave of French architects, all of whom participated in “Les Grands Projets” in Paris during the Mitterand era. Nouvel’s contribution, the Institut Monde Arabe, 1987, was one of these famous monuments; the Danish architect Johan Otto von Spreckelsen’s La Grande Arche, 1989, was another. After the construction of the Arab Institute Jean Nouvel became one of the most influential figures in the French ‘high-tech’ architectural movement.
Jean Nouvel was born in 1945 in Fumel (Lot-et-Garonnes), France, and trained at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, graduating in 1972, but even before that – in 1970 – he opened his first drawing office and over the years worked with several partners until 1994, when his present drawing office, Jean Nouvel et Associés (AJN) was established.
During his career Nouvel has created a distinctive architectural idiom that transforms the vital energy of a changing world, and his buildings stand out both by combining a unique poetic atmosphere with the latest technology and in their notable contextual relevance to the period during which he creates his buildings. He exhibits intense willpower and a capacity to decode the minutest signs and observe the symptoms of cultural and social change. Nouvel attaches great importance to designing a building in harmony with a given place and its surroundings, and his aim is to ensure that his architecture merges with the spirit of the place. In almost all his buildings we see a consistent interplay of transparency, shade and light.