Skip to main content

Titian Q & A

10. You say the cost was £50m but this does not include the cost of tax foregone by HMRC – so the price is really much higher?

Under the Private Treaty sale mechanisms, tax is foregone by HMRC thereby making it much easier for public galleries such as NGS and NGL to meet the price. The private treaty sale mechanisms have been in place for almost a century and were designed to benefit public collections in this country by making it easier for us to acquire great works of art.

HMRC may have foregone some tax but this has to be measured against the huge public benefit. Even taking into account any loss of tax, the Galleries still believe the deal struck was an extremely beneficial one for the nation.

11. Where has the £12.5m from the National Gallery London come from and is this public money?

The £12.5 from NGL, comprises of £11.5 from bequests, general donations and investment income from these sources and £1 million Grant-in-Aid.

12. Where has the £4.6m from NGS come from and is this public money?

The NGS will be committing from purchase funds including GIA for acquisitions, from external fund-raising, from accumulated reserves and other funds, including Trust Funds.

13. Does this mean that the NGS will be unable to make other purchases for the collection long into the future?

NGS has a good track record of raising funds for acquisitions and enjoys excellent support from patrons, friends and other supporters. While inevitably it will be harder to contemplate major purchases over the coming years, NGS hopes to be able to continue to add works across the range of the collections.

14. Has Scotland given more than England?

This was a joint campaign with a single campaign target, and donors were asked to contribute to the campaign target. Many donations or pledges (such as those from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund) were made to the two institutions jointly or were made because the two institutions were working together.

Many of the bodies that contributed have a UK-wide remit such as The Art Fund, The Monument Trust and the National Heritage Memorial Fund. The Scottish Government has made a substantial contribution and so has the National Gallery in London, backed by their sponsor body DCMS.

15. Have any well known public figures or famous artists donated large sums?

This campaign has been supported in a variety of ways (including financially) by a diverse range of people (including public figures and renowned artists). Donating to any appeal is a private matter between the donor and beneficiary, and therefore we would not disclose details, other than to express our appreciation to all those who have given or pledged their support.

16. How did the economic crisis affect the campaign?

There are always many competing demands for funding and of course we recognise that the present climate presents many difficulties for Government and for members of the public.

Inevitably the economic context made the challenge of fund-raising all the more formidable, but the quality of the picture, the paramount importance of the Bridgewater Collection, and the generous terms offered by the owner were all widely recognised and, as the figures show, the response was fantastic.

17. How many Titians do the NGS and NGL own apart from Diana and Actaeon?

NGL owns 11 other paintings by Titian. NGS owns Venus Anadyomene, acquired from the Bridgewater Collection in 2003, with 3 further Titians (including 'Diana and Callisto') on loan from the Bridgewater Collection.

18. The National Gallery in London already had eleven Titian paintings, did it really need another?

Both National Galleries own great works by Titian, but neither institution has other paintings which are of the same type as these mature poetic narratives. The National Gallery in London owns a later and unfinished painting of this type – the Death of Actaeon – which is fascinating to view beside the two Bridgewater Titians; it also owns 'Bacchus and Ariadne', arguably the first great narrative painting of this kind painted by Titian, which is however very different in style. It is of course hard to be too rich in the work of an artist of Titian’s stature.

19. How is the painting going to be shared between the two galleries?

Titian's 'Diana and Actaeon' will be shared equally by both institutions. The picture will be in Edinburgh until September 2009 and will then travel to London for eight months before returning to Edinburgh for a further eight months. This eight month periodic rotation is intended to continue until 2012 when the 5-year rotation will begin. Titian's 'Diana and Callisto' will remain on loan at the NGS