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£2 million gift from the Hintze Family Charitable Foundation

Issued: January 2011

The National Gallery is delighted to announce it has received an exceptional gift of £2 million from the Hintze Family Charitable Foundation.
Michael Hintze said:

‘The National Gallery has an extraordinary collection that Dorothy, our children and I enjoy enormously. We have always sought to give back to those institutions that have enriched and given so much to our lives. Private benefactors have historically formed some two-thirds of the National Gallery’s support and in these difficult economic times the commitment of private individuals is especially important.’

The money will be used to refurbish a number of gallery spaces in the original Wilkins Building, transforming their display and environmental conditions for the benefit of the collection and the visiting public. The implementation of more efficient state-of-the-art technology and lighting will have a positive effect on both the Gallery’s overall running costs and its carbon footprint. For a number of years the Gallery has been committed to providing innovative approaches to environmental conditions in the building and this donation will help realise that aim.

In recognition of their generous gift, Room 8 of the National Gallery has been named ‘The Dorothy and Michael Hintze Room.’

National Gallery Director, Dr Nicholas Penny, said:

‘At a time when the need to support the arts has never been greater, we salute Michael and Dorothy Hintze, and other philanthropists like them, who play such a significant role in safeguarding the arts. They have the vision to recognise the importance of protecting our cultural treasures and understand how these treasures enrich society.’

He continued:

‘As someone living in South London, I would like to thank the Hintzes for what they have done to enable Wandsworth Museum to reopen. As a lover of theatre, I'd like to thank them for their support of the Old Vic. As a lover of sculpture, I'd like to express my appreciation for all they have done for the Victoria & Albert Museum. These are just a few aspects of the cultural life of the United Kingdom that they have supported. We know that the National Gallery is especially dear to the Hintzes and we are deeply grateful to them for their recognition of our particular needs. This magnificent gift will have a direct influence on the experience of our visitors.’

Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt, who recently announced the Government’s plan to boost philanthropy, said:

‘I would like to pay tribute to the support and generosity shown by Michael and Dorothy Hintze. Giving money to arts and culture is an incredibly public-spirited thing to do and this is one of a number of generous gifts made by two exceptional people. Their gift to the National Gallery is truly inspirational and I hope others will be moved to follow their example.’

Michael Hintze concluded:

‘We are all custodians of this incredible inheritance. It is both a privilege and an obligation for Dorothy and me to be able to make a contribution to help preserve such national treasures for future generations.‘

Notes to Editors

Michael Hintze founded the London-based asset manager CQS in 1999, having previously worked at Credit Suisse First Boston, Goldman Sachs and Salomon Brothers. He is a Trustee of the Institute of Economic Affairs and the Prince’s Foundation for the Built Environment. He was appointed a Trustee of the National Gallery on 1 April 2008.

Room 8 of the National Gallery features paintings from Florence and Rome 1500–1560, including works by Raphael, Michelangelo, Fra Bartolommeo, Sebastiano del Piombo and Polidoro da Caravaggio.

For further press information please contact Eloise Maxwell in the National Gallery Press Office on 020 7747 2839 or