The Louvre’s Lockdown Makeover

The largest museum in the world has been closed for almost four months due to the pandemic, but no time is wasted in Paris; the beautiful Louvre is having a makeover. 

After acting as a fortress for years and then hosting the kings of France, two war-filled, stormy, post-revolutionary centuries went by where the Louvre palace museum welcomed visitors from all over the world. Last year, the first lockdown ground the bulletproof museum to a halt, but during the lockdown of 2021, Le Musée du Louvre is taking full advantage of closing for more than a weekly Tuesday, undergoing extensive refurbishments. 

Many of the museum’s dedicated staff, like artefacts department curator Elisabeth Antoine-Konig, have returned to curate and restore the exhibitions, 

“When the museum reopens, everything will be perfect for its visitors – this Sleeping Beauty will have had the time to powder her nose….visitors will be happy to see again these now well-lit rooms with polished floors and remodeled display cases,” Antoine-Konig told the Associated Press.

Around 250 other happy staff have been busy fixing up sculptures, artifacts, and completing restorations, including a restoration of the Louvre’s biggest hall, the beautiful Grande Galerie. All the while cables for a new security system are being laid.

“We’re taking advantage of the museum’s closure to carry out a number of major works, speed up maintenance operations and start repair works that are difficult to schedule when the museum is operating normally,” the Louvre’s Architectural Heritage and Gardens Director Laurent le Guedart, confided in a recent interview.

10 huge restoration projects are currently underway including major restoration of the ancient Egyptian tomb chapel of Akhethotep from 2400BC, the Etruscan and Italian Halls, and the gilded Salon Carre.

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Currently it is not known when this wonderful Parisian museum will open again, but when it does, first visitors will need pre-booked reservations to be granted entry due to COVID-19 precautions. Keen art enthusiasts and historians who miss the exhibits can now see the Louvre’s wonderful collections art in virtual online tours. 

Maybe one thing good has emerged from this pandemic; virtual tours have opened old-fashioned museum doors to all age groups everywhere, making art history now seem more accessible and inclusive than ever. Hopefully, this online platform can offer a chance to glimpse some famous architecture, awesome sculptures, and a cheeky wink from the Mona Lisa, to those who never normally could have ventured inside the majestic Louvre.

Emma Monaghan
Emma Monaghan

One comment

  1. Can’t wait to go Paris ASAP! Being a willing Francophile you have whetted my appetite for all things cultural in the spectacular capital

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