Diana and Actaeon
- Art Funded
- 38 × 39.5cm
- Bequeathed by
- Mr George Watson through The Art Fund
One of the treasures of the National Gallery is Diego Velázquez's painting An Old Woman Cooking Eggs. One of the artist's earlier works, it belongs to the bodegón (kitchen scene) tradition and was painted from life models.
The Art Fund broke new ground when it saved Sandro Botticelli's Virgin Adoring the Sleeping Christ Child for the nation in 1999. In little over a month, the largest grant ever provided by the Art Fund at the time, £550,000, secured what is probably the most famous painting to be acquired by any museum in the UK in the second half of the 20th century.
Some of the the gallery's most famous works have been joint purchases, acquired after energetic Art Fund campaigns: Antonio Canova's iconic marble sculpture, The Three Graces, is shared with the V&A, while Titian's two masterpieces, Diana and Actaeon and Diana and Callisto are jointly owned with the National Gallery in London.