Van Dyck Self Portrait Bought by London’s National Portrait Gallery Thanks to Public Appeal

Van Dyck, Self-portrait, 1641
Van Dyck, Self-portrait, 1641

10,000 individuals have donated over £1.4 million to purchase Van Dyck’s Self Portrait (1641) for the National Portrait Gallery collection, the BBC reports.

The piece had been bought by James Stunt, the son-in-law of Formula 1 magnate Bernie Ecclestone, but an export ban was imposed in 2013 to try to keep the painting in the UK.

The painting was offered to the NPG for £10 million, £2.5 million less than its price on the open market. The sum was reached via several major donations, including from the charity Art Fund, which gave £500,000.

The Dutch Sir Anthony Van Dyck was court artist for King Charles I in London, who had granted him a £200 salary, a knighthood, and a gold chain.

One of only three self-portraits painted by Van Dyck during his time in London, the piece sold for £8.3 million in 2009, almost three times its presale estimate.


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