'It's a snip'

October 16 2012

Video: Art Fund

The National Gallery in London is exhibiting Poussin's 'Extreme Unction', which, as I reported a while ago, the Fitzwilliam Museum is hoping to buy. It is one of the Rutland series of Seven Sacrements. In the video above, Fitzwilliam curator Jane Munro sets out the picture's merits. The price is £3.9m after tax deductions, which is rightly described by David Scrase in this video, as 'a snip'. The Kimbell Museum in Texas recently shelled out £24m for their Sacrament.

Waldemar went to see it at the National, and wrote a lively piece about the picture in the Sunday Times. He said (and I thoroughly agree with him);

If they had had a cash box in the room, I would have emptied my pockets into it there and then. As it is, I hope you will join me in adding a donation at artfund.org/poussin.

I hope they raise the cash, and have until November to do so. There is just one thing which might hinder the effort - the Fitzwilliam currently has no director. Timothy Potts recently left to go to the Getty, and a replacement has yet to be announced. Normally, one would expect such an appeal to be led by a museum's director, someone who can act as a focal point for the marketing and lobbying, and help generate the private donations needed.

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