Saved: Van Dyck's Self-portrait

Sir Anthony Van Dyck's final self-portrait has been bought by the National Portrait Gallery, following the success of a public appeal by the Gallery and the Art Fund.

Van Dyck tour venues

  • Turner Contemporary, Margate

    24 January - 10 May 2015

  • Manchester Art Gallery

    21 May - 31 August 2015

  • National Portrait Gallery, London

    4 September 2015 - 3 January 2016

  • Dulwich Picture Gallery, London

    12 January - 24 April 2016
  • Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery

    Summer 2016
  • National Portrait Gallery, London, Autumn/Winter 2016

  • Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle

    Spring 2017
  • Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh

    Summer 2017
  • National Portrait Gallery, London

    Autumn/Winter 2017

The appeal was one of the most successful campaigns to support a work of art of the last 100 years, thanks to the extraordinary generosity of individuals and trusts. Around 10,000 individuals made donations totalling more than £1.44m, in addition to £1.2m from two private trusts and £1.35m from the Art Fund and National Portrait Gallery.

The fundraising was completed thanks to a grant of £6,343,500 from the Heritage Lottery Fund, bringing the total amount raised to £10m to purchase the portrait, with a further £343,000 to support a national tour of the painting.

A work of huge international importance, the 1640-41 self-portrait – the last one Van Dyck created – presents an intimate image of the artist at work. Within a year of producing the portrait Van Dyck was dead, buried in the old St Paul's Cathedral with the epitaph: 'Anthony Van Dyck – who, while he lived, gave to many immortal life'.

The portrait will remain on display at the National Portrait Gallery in London until 31 August before research and conservation work is undertaken. It will then embark on a three-year tour of six museums and galleries across the UK from January 2015.

The campaign originally sought to raise £12.5m to prevent the work from going overseas, but the figure was lowered to £10m following the withdrawal of the export licence in March 2014.

Stephen Deuchar, Director of the Art Fund, says: 'The campaign to save this remarkable painting has stirred up astonishing public support with some 10,000 individuals donating over £1.4m to the cause – making it one of the most successful appeals of the last 100 years.

'Art lovers and museum goers around the country are the real heroes of the hour, helping to unlock the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund and other major donors.'

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