Two weeks to go!

It's been a busy couple of weeks. The gallery has new walls, half of it's new lighting system and most importantly lots of wonderful paintings. We are about half way through the hang now and have faced some interesting challenges. We have been overwhelmed with choice thanks to our very generous lenders. Deciding on the final object list has been really challenging. We are already planning what we are going to display next year, when some of the paintings have to be returned to their lenders!

Our loans from the Arts Council, V&A and Pallant House all arrived. The model set designed by Piper for the Benjamin Britten opera, The Rape of Lucretia, was nerve wracking to remove from it's crate and into it's case, but it was worth it. It is wonderfully intricate and a joy to look at.

This week we will be moving our huge Piper mural 'Landscape of Two Seasons' 1959, from one end of the Museum to it's new home outside the Piper Gallery. It will involve an external conservation company and every member of staff we can muster. The conservators will also be returning the newly preserved and mounted backdrop from Beauty and the Beast, painted by John Piper for the performance held at Henley's Kenton Theatre in 1952. We are all hugely excited to finally have this on display.

Hopefully those of you who chose the rewards with a private view invitation have now received these. We're looking forward to meeting some of the people who helped make the gallery possible. The other rewards should be on their way soon, including vouchers for afternoon tea and free entry to the exhibition.

Thanks again to everyone who helped, without you none of this would be happening!

"Art Fund" is the operating name of the National Art Collections Fund, a charity registered in England and Wales (209174) and Scotland (SC038331)