Government steps in to block two rare George Stubbs paintings from leaving the country
Nick Clark is the arts correspondent of The Independent. He joined the newspaper in June 2007, initially reporting on the stock markets. He has covered beats including the City, and technology, media and telecoms and made the switch to arts in December 2011. He has also contributed articles to the sports section.
Wednesday 06 February 2013
The Government has temporarily blocked two rare George Stubbs paintings from leaving the country, although £5.5m needs to be raised by August to keep them in the UK permanently.
Culture minister Ed Vaizey has put a temporary export bar on The Kongouro from New Holland (The Kangaroo) and Portrait of a Large Dog (The Dingo), which were first exhibited in 1773 at the Royal Academy.
The works were the first to introduce animals from the Australasian New World to the British public in the 18th century.
The Reviewing Committee on the Export of Works of Art and Objects of Cultural Interest recommended the export decision be deferred, saying their departure “would be a misfortune”. The bar expires on 5 August, but may be extended by a further three months.
Lord Inglewood, chairman of the committee, said: “It would be a terrible shame if the UK were to lose these extraordinary paintings to an overseas buyer.”
Stubbs was known for his paintings of horses and dogs. These two were among the few he was unable to paint from life. He worked of verbal accounts and for the kangaroo, used sketches and by inflating the preserved skin.
They are believed to have been commissioned by Sir Joseph Banks after his part in Captain James Cook’s first voyage of discovery to the Pacific.
The committee added the paintings “were of outstanding significance for the study of 18th century exploration of Australia and the public dissemination of knowledge during the Enlightenment”.
- 3 The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
- 4 British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Paris attacks: Do not call Charlie Hebdo killers 'terrorists', BBC says
UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
Asteroid narrowly scrapes past Earth: how to watch the closest space rock for decades as it flies by
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Prince Philip set to be knighted by Australia: Celebrate by reading his greatest gaffes
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd
30,000 reasons why the rhetoric on immigrants claiming benefits can stop now
£38000 - £42000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the UK's best performing...
£35000 - £43000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our award-winning client is one...
£15000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leading provider of Atlas ...
£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Opportunity to join established...