The Art Fund helps to bring magnificant Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones panel to Wales

  • 3 June 2008

National Museum Wales will today add "Perseus and the Graiae" by Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones to its collection. The Art Fund gave a grant of £25,000 to help National Museum Cardiff acquire the work.

The scheme enables objects judged to be of national, artistic, historic or scientific interest to be accepted in lieu of inheritance tax.

There are several works by Burne-Jones (who was of Welsh extraction) in Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales’ collection, and Perseus and the Graiae will form a focal point of the Museum’s new Victorian displays in Gallery 6 which will complete in December 2008.

Heritage Minister, Rhodri Glyn Thomas said “I am very pleased that this important work will be displayed for the public to see at National Museum Cardiff”.

The Art Fund’s Director, David Barrie, said “Commissioned by the young MP, Arthur Balfour, and later displayed in 10 Downing Street during his premiership, this low relief panel of Perseus and the Graiae shows Burne-Jones at the very height of his powers. The Art Fund recently helped Cardiff acquire a great landscape painting by another leading Victorian artist, Edward Lear, and we are delighted to have enabled them to add this remarkable mythological work to the Welsh national collection.”

Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales operates seven national museums across Wales. These are National Museum Cardiff, St Fagans: National History Museum, National Roman Legion Museum, Caerleon, Big Pit: National Coal Museum, Blaenafon, National Wool Museum, Dre-fach Felindre, National Slate Museum, Llanberis, and the National Waterfront Museum, Swansea.

Entry to all national museums is free thanks to the support of the Welsh Assembly Government.

For more information, please contact Sian James, Corporate Communications Officer, National Museum Wales
029 2057 3175 / 07812 801356

Notes to Editors
For more information regarding the display of “Perseus and the Graiae” by Edward Burne-Jones, please contact Oliver Fairclough, Keeper of Art at National Museum Cardiff, on 029 2057 3275
or email

Acceptance in Lieu Scheme (AIL)

The National Heritage Act 1980 and the Inheritance Tax Act 1984 empowers the HM Commissioners of Revenue and Customs to accept certain property in whole or part satisfaction of inheritance tax and any interest thereon. Property may be accepted if it is judged to be pre-eminent in terms of national, artistic, historic and scientific interest.

The AIL Scheme is administered by the Museums, Libraries and Archive Council (MLA), the Government’s advisers on museum and gallery matters.

The Art Fund
The Art Fund is the UK’s leading independent art charity. It offers grants to help UK museums and galleries enrich their collections; campaigns on behalf of museums and their visitors; and promotes the enjoyment of art. It is entirely funded from public donations and has 80,000 members. Since 1903 the charity has helped museums and galleries all over the UK secure 860,000 works of art for their collections. Recent achievements include: helping secure Anthony d’Offay’s collection, ARTIST ROOMS, for Tate and National Galleries of Scotland in February 2008 with a grant of £1million; putting together a unique funding package to ensure Dumfries House in Ayrshire and its contents were secured intact for the nation in July 2007; and running the ‘Buy a Brushstroke’ public appeal which raised over £550,000 to keep Turner’s Blue Rigi watercolour in the UK. For more information contact the Press Office on 020 7225 4888 or visit