Upon entering the Louvre Abu Dhabi now, you will find rows of singing palm trees greeting you, and the closer you get to them, the louder they get. If you hug them, they reach their loudest volume.
The trees are part of an interactive installation set up to highlight the natural environment and encourage people to pay attention to - and interact with - it.
In partnership with Paris’s Theatre du Chatelet, Louvre Abu Dhabi commissioned design and technology studio Umbrellium from London to create the installation.
The studio’s interest in engaging with the dialogue on the climate crisis led to the creation of the singing palm trees, which are also programmed to change settings according to the world air quality index’s statistics on the UAE at each moment; when there’s a hike in air pollution, the music’s quality crackles.
The speakers strapped around the palm trees are wrapped in perforated cotton rather than plastic, to ensure it does not have a negative impact on the environment, and the belt is also made of material that does not harm the tree or its dates.
“We’re trying to bring everybody into the conversation,” said the studio’s chief strategy officer, Andrew Caleya Chetty. “The air quality work we do is about enabling citizens or viewers to understand that they have a role in climate change and a simple action on their part could be like a butterfly beating its wings. It could have a very large ramification,” he explains.
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Do you want to get closer to nature? Experience this world-premiere installation for free in Louvre Abu Dhabi's Park until 7 March 🌴 After the Abu Dhabi premiere, the installation will travel to the garden of Paris’ Palais Royal, followed by presentations in #London, #NewYork and #Paris again for the Olympics in 2024. __ هل تريد الاقتراب من الطبيعة أكثر؟ اكتشف هذا العمل التركيبي الأول من نوعه في العالم مجاناً في حديقة اللوفر أبوظبي حتى ٧ مارس. بعد عرضه للمرة الأولى في اللوفر أبوظبي، سينتقل هذا العمل إلى حديقة القصر الملكي في باريس، ثم إلى مدن لندن ونيويورك وبعدها سيعود إلى باريس لعرضه خلال أولمبياد ٢٠٢٤
The songs include the traditional Emirati Ayyala and other French and English traditional folk songs. The installation will be at the Louvre until March 17, after which it will be sent to Paris for display in September.