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The Galleria set to host French luxury event Comité Colbert

Flânerie Colbert Abu Dhabi, a new collaboration between Comité Colbert, a group of 84 French luxury houses and 16 cultural institutions, and Abu Dhabi will see a cross-cultural dialogue between France and the UAE.

Taking place from November 12 to December 14, the series of special events, with the support of the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi), will take place across the city, including the House of Artisans at the Al Hosn site, The Galleria Maryah Island, at the annual Abu Dhabi Art fair, and at Louvre Abu Dhabi.

The Louvre Abu Dhabi exhibition will be complemented by cross-cultural craft demonstrations, workshops and talks at House of Artisans from November 12 to 28, activations throughout The Galleria Al Maryah Island, which will highlight the combined creativity of teams of French luxury houses, from November 12 to December 14, and also talks on French luxury and contemporary art by speakers from prestigious French luxury houses and cultural institutions at Abu Dhabi Art, which will run on November 20 and 23.

“The building of cultural bridges is a fundamental aspect of DCT Abu Dhabi’s mandate, as we reflect the openness of wider Emirati society, and its enthusiasm for embracing other cultures, and for sharing Emirati culture with the world,” said HE Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, chairman of DCT Abu Dhabi. “In this respect, Flânerie Colbert will bring together artisan skills, contemporary creation and the very best of both Emirati and French cultures.”

Notably, the events will also echo the themes of the 10,000 Years of Luxury exhibition, which will be presented from October 30 until February 15, 2020 at the museum by the MAD, an associate member of the Comité Colbert. Featuring 350 extraordinary objects from the fields of fashion, jewellery, art, furniture and design, the show will look at the various ways luxury has been interpreted by diverse cultures throughout history.

The House of Artisans programme will feature French and Emirati artisans engaging in a conversation about their respective crafts, including al sadu, bisht, calligraphy, gahwa, khoos, talli or khanjar-making on the Emirati side and, on the French side, embroidery, gastronomy, silversmithing and leather goods.

Christian Dior will divulge the secrets that go into making the iconic Lady Dior handbag. In their conversation with a practitioner of talli handicraft, Guerlain's "table ladies" will shed light on the art of sealing and finishing fragrance bottles. Puiforcat will present the silversmith’s planishing technique in counterpoint to the fabrication of a traditional Khanjar dagger by an Emirati artisan.

In other dialogues with Emirati artisans, Hermès will focus on master leather, saddle-making skills; Hôtel le Bristol on chocolate making; and Louis Vuitton on painting techniques.

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