Quebec museums keen to acquire prized painting of Saint Jérôme, now designated a heritage asset

Quebec’s two main museums are extra keen than ever to acquire a prized painting that the National Gallery of Canada had sought final 12 months, now that Jacques-Louis David’s 18th-century painting of Saint Jérôme has been designated a provincial heritage asset.

The current and remaining designation determination by Nathalie Roy, Quebec’s minister of tradition and communications, “is very good news for our collective heritage,” Stéphan La Roche, director of the Musée de la civilization in Quebec City, stated Tuesday.

The minister’s determination will inspire the Quebec City museum and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts to proceed their discussions with the painting’s proprietor, the parish of Notre-Dame de Québec, relating to a joint acquisition, La Roche stated.

Last 12 months, the National Gallery moved forward with a plan to promote La Tour Eiffel, one of two work by Marc Chagall in its assortment, to elevate as a lot as $9 million US to purchase the painting. But the National Gallery’s plan was spoiled in April 2018 when the earlier Quebec authorities introduced its intention to assign particular cultural standing to the David painting, primarily stopping it from leaving the province.

The deliberate sale of the Chagall painting at a New York public sale in mid-May 2018 didn’t go forward as deliberate following a lot public outcry, a letter in protest from Chagall’s household, and a determination by the National Gallery’s board of administrators that successfully undid senior administration’s choices.

Painted in 1779 by the preeminent French neoclassical artist, Saint Jérôme Hears the Trumpet of the Last Judgment was introduced to Quebec City within the early 1900s by two sisters, Henriette and Geneviève Cramail, who got here from France to Quebec. The sisters donated the painting to the parish in 1938. From 1995 to 2013, the painting was on show on the National Gallery. It now hangs within the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. Last 12 months, the parish reportedly put the painting in the marketplace for greater than $6 million, so as to elevate cash to restore the roof of the Notre Dame de Québec Cathedral-Basilica.

La Roche stated the 2 Quebec museums and the parish ought to meet by the tip of the spring.

“Will this be the end of the process or a new step? We cannot say yet, but we are convinced that it will be constructive,” he stated.

The acquisition of the David painting “would complement admirably the inventory of the future museum of the Séminaire de Québec,” La Roche stated.

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Twitter: @peterhum



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