Liverpool: Walker Art Gallery given Monet and Degas paintings

Image caption, New impressionist artworks will be on show at the Walker Art Gallery

  • Author, Gemma Sherlock
  • Role, BBC News, Merseyside

Paintings by two of Europe’s most famous artists have been given to a city gallery.

The Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool, has received works from French impressionist painters Claude Monet and Edgar Degas.

Monet’s ‘The Epte in Giverny’ and Degas’ ‘Modiste Decorating a Hat’, will go on display on 27 April.

Kate O’Donoghue, from National Museums Liverpool, said they will “inspire visitors for many years to come”.

Image source, Walker Art Gallery, National Museums Liverpool

Image caption, Modiste Decorating a Hat, 1891-1895, Edgar Degas

Ms O’Donoghue said: “Claude Monet’s landscapes and Edgar Degas’ scenes of everyday life epitomise the impressionist movement and it’s difficult to overstate quite how special it is to obtain these new works by two of Europe’s most famous artists.”

Painted in 1884, The Epte in Giverny by Monet presents a vibrant, leafy scene in the village of Giverny in Normandy, France, where the artist painted his famous water lily series.

It will sit in the Walker’s existing collection, which already holds Monet’s ‘Break-up of the ice on the Seine, near Bennecourt’.

Degas’ ‘Modiste Decorating a Hat’ depicts a milliner adjusting a hat in a shop window.

It joins another work by Degas in the Walker’s collection, ‘Woman Ironing’, which is currently on loan to the museum.

Image source, Walker Art Gallery, National Museums Liverpool

Image caption, The Epte in Giverny, 1884, Claude Monet

The new acquisitions come from the collection of Mary Elliot-Blake, who died in 1996.

They have been owned by the Montagu family, and owing to the family’s connections to Liverpool, the paintings were allocated to the Walker under the Acceptance in Lieu scheme.

The scheme allows people who have an Inheritance Tax bill to pay to transfer important cultural, scientific or historic objects and archives to the nation.

Material accepted under the scheme is allocated to public museums, archives or libraries.

A spokesman for National Museums Liverpool said the organisation was “extremely grateful to the Montagu family for supporting the acquisition, to the Rick Mather David Scrase Foundation for generously funding the conservation of the works, and to Christie’s for their assistance with negotiations”.

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