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Art lovers help save masterpiece for nation

Sir John Leighton
Sir John Leighton: incredible public support (photo by Terry Murden)

£4 million target reached

Public donations have helped secure one of the most famous nineteenth century paintings for the nation.

Art lovers from around the world have contributed £250,000 towards the £4 million needed to ensure The Monarch of the Glen by Sir Edwin Landseer (1802-73) will be on permanent display at the National Galleries of Scotland.

Diageo agreed to gift half the estimated market value of the painting to allow NGS the opportunity to acquire the work.

After securing support from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Art Fund, NGS last month launched a public fundraising campaign to help raise the final amount.

Donations have come from Anchorage, Queensland, Los Angeles and Hong Kong, among other locations.

An additional £100,000 from the NGS acquisition fund, the Scottish Government and donations from private trusts and foundations enabled the £4 million target to be reached.

The painting will initially be hung in the Scottish National Gallery and plans will be developed for a tour across Scotland this year.

Sir John Leighton, director-general of the National Galleries of Scotland, said:We are thrilled that we have been able to secure this iconic work for the national collection.

“The enormous support from the public has been incredible with donations coming from all over the world.

Digital monarch
A digital animation of the deer, recreating the animal’s famous pose, was screened on the side of the gallery wall to launch the appeal. (photo by Terry Murden)


“Thank you so much to everyone who has donated. Your gift has helped to ensure that this magnificent work will be enjoyed by millions of people for generations to come.”

Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop said: “The overwhelmingly positive response to the public fundraising campaign underlines the importance of the painting to people in Scotland and around the world.

“I am pleased the Scottish Government was able to provide £100,000 towards its acquisition and a further £75,000 for a tour that will enable communities across Scotland to see it. I look forward to seeing the Monarch of the Glen continue to attract visitors from far and wide in the years to come.”

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