Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin, Minister of Culture, has appointed, on the proposal of Jean-Luc Martinez, President and Director of the Louvre Museum, Ariane Thomas, Director of the Department of Oriental Antiquities of the Louvre Museum, effective January 11, 2021 for a three-year renewable period. She succeeds Marielle Pic, General Curator of Heritage, who headed this department since 2014.
Born in 1983, Ariane Thomas is a heritage curator and PhD in art history and archaeology, graduated from La Sorbonne, the Ecole du Louvre and the Institut national du patrimoine.
She has been a museum advisor for the Île-de-France Regional Directorate of Cultural Affairs and has been in charge of the Mesopotamian collections at the Louvre since 2011. After curating the exhibition «History begins in Mesopotamia» in 2016 at the Louvre-Lens, whose American stop «Mesopotamia: Civilization begins» is currently at the Villa Getty in Los Angeles, she was one of the curators of the exhibition «Music! Echos of Antiquity» presented in 2017 at the Louvre-Lens, then in 2018 at the La Caixa Foundation in Madrid and Barcelona. She also spearheaded the design of a virtual tour of the Assyrian site of Khorsabad. Eager to share her knowledge, she has published many articles, some of them for the general public.
Ariane Thomas has also participated in archaeological excavations in Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Uzbekistan. She is a member of the Digitorient team of the Collège de France (CNRS, UMR 7192), and was particularly involved with the teams of the Mosul Museum in order to rehabilitate the museum, badly damaged during the occupation of the city by the Islamic State, as part of an international programme supported by the International Alliance for the Protection of Heritage in Conflict Zones (ALIPH).
She has taught for many years at the Ecole du Louvre, the National Heritage Institute and several universities in France and abroad.
Ariane Thomas will have to continue the dynamic of opening the Louvre Museum to Europe and beyond.
Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin would like to salute the remarkable career of Madame Pic in the service of the Ministry of Culture.