30/01/2014 : €26 million renovation project at National Gallery will safeguard renowned collection for future generations
Thursday, January 30th – Jimmy Deenihan TD, Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, will this evening speak at the National Gallery of Ireland on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of this leading national cultural institution.
Minister Deenihan commented:
“This is an important year for the National Gallery of Ireland. It is the year we celebrate 150 years of this cultural institution, which has grown over time to be a world-leading gallery. It is a time to celebrate the jewel that is the gallery, and it’s excellent collection of artwork. And, it is the year that we have started the most significant renovation and restoration of the historic wings of this building.
“This €26 million project will include opening up features within the historic wings which have not been seen by the public since Victorian times. Spaces between the wings will be converted for use as a sculpture court. And 21st century systems will be put in place to safeguard the collection and to allow artworks from other galleries to be exhibited on loan at the National Gallery.
“At 150, this major work at the National Gallery will safeguard the historic wings of this leading institution, and the priceless collection, for generations to come.”
This major renovation project is being jointly funded by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, the National Gallery of Ireland and the Office of Public Works. The refurbishment will include:
• The repair and restoration of the fabric of the Dargan and Milltown Wings, and the Merrion Entrance, whilst upgrading the buildings to modern gallery standards.
• The installation of 21st century climate, heating, fire suppression, electrical, lighting and security systems.
• The reopening of Victorian features and spaces within the building previously unseen by the public.
• The conversion of spaces between the wings for public use and as exhibition spaces to include the provision of a sculpture court.
• The protection and preservation of the building itself, as well as the provision of universal access for all visitors throughout the building.
The project is expected to support approximately 280 jobs over its lifetime, and is expected to take 24 months to complete.