- Glassroof & Skylights
Skylights in the Grand Louvre
Etablissement public du Grand Louvre
Architects: I.M. Pei and Michel Macary
The Louvre museum upgrade culminated in the restructuring of the 19th century Richelieu wing, whose galleries are laid out around three internal courtyards. The covering of the latter with skylights has created exceptional spaces for display, midway between interior and exterior; the quality of natural light there is decisive for museography. The difficulty in building these skylights was that their slender structures had to carry glazed surfaces with dimensions ranging from 600 to 2400 m2. The technical solution devised by Peter Rice consisted in a tubular steel vault sub-tensed and stabilised by a network of cables and rods. The clarity of the structure results from the fact that all the efforts are concentrated in a few complex nodal points.