Museum acquisitions

Museums often acquire works through donations but, in spite of funding constraints, they also make purchases to expand their collections, either bidding at auctions, negotiating private treaty sales or, in the UK, via the Acceptance in Lieu scheme.


Manchester gallery secures Light of the World after all

28 November 2001

Manchester City Art Gallery, the underbidder at auction for the lantern which was the original model for Holman Hunt’s The Light of the World, have secured the piece after all. The gallery underbid the lantern, pictured right, when it was sold to a private collector for £46,000 (plus 15% buyer’s premium) on November 1 at Bonhams Knightsbridge.

For the nation by hook and crook

30 October 2001

PICTURED right is just one of a number of rare and important artefacts whose sale to the nation has just been negotiated by Christie’s.The 14th century Norwegian carved ivory crozier head, which has been sold in lieu of inheritance tax and will go to the V&A, is an extremely rare example of late medieval Scandinavian carved ivory.

Major silver collection to go to Boston

13 July 2001

THE Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts has acquired one of the world’s most important collections of English Silver, that of Alan and Simone Hartman.

St Sebastian goes to the V&A

11 July 2001

UK: A TEMPORARY export ban on an important reliquary from the Wernher Collection has allowed the V&A to acquire it with backing from the Lottery and the National Arts Collection Fund.

Cincinnati Museum project turns up unknown miniatures by Hilliard, Cosway and Cooper

19 March 2001

A MAJOR cataloguing project at the Museum of Cincinnati in Ohio has authenticated up to 15 very important and hitherto unrecorded portrait miniatures by the likes of Nicholas Hilliard.

Saatchi gift for museums

11 September 2000

UK: THE Saatchi Gallery is to distribute 39 works of Contemporary Art by British artists among seven regional galleries and museums.

Gavels hammer down millions in London bid fest

10 July 2000

THE second week of London’s prestige midsummer sales saw the Modern given way to the traditional with a flurry of exceptional prices for Old Master paintings and drawings and Renaissance works of art.

Rare medieval painting to be reunited with altarpiece

24 April 2000

UK: LEADING London art dealer Simon Dickinson has announced the sale to the Brooklyn Museum of Art of the 14th century Florentine gold ground painting of Christ in Majesty which he bought for £66,000 at Dorchester rooms of Hy. Duke & Son on March 9

Botticelli scoop for Scottish gallery

30 November 1999

UK: A RARE catch indeed, the most important painting of its period in a British private collection, Botticelli’s Virgin Adoring the Christ Child, c.1490-1500, pictured right, has been acquired by the National Gallery of Scotland from the 10th Earl of Wemyss and March, who was about to sell it to America.

Hermitage collections for Somerset House

08 November 1999

UK: A PERMANENT exhibition space for objects from the Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg is to be part of the continuing development of London’s Somerset House as an arts complex.

From blockhouse to army museum

08 November 1999

UK: THE unknown British soldier who embroidered the crude depiction of his lonely blockhouse on the South African veld almost a century ago, could hardly have expected his work to end up on the hallowed walls of the National Army Museum in Chelsea, having provoked intense competition from international bidders at Bosley’s auction of militaria in Marlow on October 12.

Diary’s delights

18 October 1999

UK: LADY Charlotte Schreiber was a celebrated 19th century collector numbering ceramics, enamels and fans amongst her passions.

A unique piece of history

21 June 1999

UK: ONE of the bargains of the year must be the British Library’s purchase of the Letters of the Earl of Essex to Elizabeth I, which sold at Phillips on June 11 for a low-estimate £150,000 plus premium.

Database of displays

19 April 1999

UK: THE Museums and Galleries Commission has launched Cornucopia an initiative which aims to provide a complete picture of the wealth of UK museum collections.

News

Categories