The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Thursday, June 21, 2018

Art Fund launches £3.9m appeal to acquire Nicolas Poussin masterpiece for the nation
Nicolas Poussin, Extreme Unction (c. 1638-40).

LONDON.- The Art Fund today announced its support of the Fitzwilliam Museum’s Public Appeal to acquire Nicolas Poussin’s masterpiece Extreme Unction (c. 1638-40). The painting, the value of which has been agreed at £14m, has been made available to the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, for just under £3.9m, thanks to H.M. Government’s Acceptance-in-Lieu scheme. Thus far, nearly 10% of this target has been pledged, and the Art Fund and the Fitzwilliam Museum have today begun their campaign to raise the rest of the money.

One of the surviving Seven Sacraments painted in Rome for the renowned scholar and connoisseur Cassiano dal Pozzo, Extreme Unction (‘Final Anointing’) has long been considered by critics to be the finest work from one of the most remarkable series of paintings ever conceived. It depicts a dying man being anointed with oil in accordance with the rites of the early Church. The painting is of critical importance to the study of western art. Poussin’s work has influenced many great painters from David and Ingres to Cézanne and even Picasso, and continues to inspire artists to this day.

Extreme Unction is currently owned by The 11th Duke of Rutland's 2000 Settlement. As a result of the sale in 2011 for £15m of Poussin’s Ordination to the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, the Trustees incurred inheritance tax. To pay for this the Trustees have offered Extreme Unction through H.M. Government’s Acceptance-in-Lieu system, with a condition that it be allocated to the Fitzwilliam Museum. As the painting’s value is greater than the tax which arises from the sale of Ordination, a net payment is due to the Trustees from the Fitzwilliam of £3,875,917, if the acquisition is to proceed. The Fitzwilliam has only until early November 2012 to raise the necessary funds to acquire the painting.

Dr. Timothy Potts, Director of the Fitzwilliam Museum, said, “This would be the most significant old master painting acquired by the Museum in nearly a century and would transform our representation of French art and of the classical tradition through a masterpiece by the greatest French painter of the seventeenth-century. It is a “destination painting” that will both benefit from the context of our great European collections and add greatly to the experience and programmes that we can offer the public. It will be a uniquely rich resource for teaching at all levels, drawing as it does in style and subject matter from ancient Roman art, the rituals of the early Christian Church, and Poussin’s own artistic grounding in France and Rome. A national and international treasure, it would be very much at home at the Fitzwilliam, and we are delighted that the Art Fund has joined with us in seeking to acquire it for Cambridge.”

Extreme Unction is currently on display in Gallery 3 at the Fitzwilliam Museum for all to see. Admission to the Museum is free. The Fitzwilliam also has ambitious plans to create wide-ranging public programmes around the themes of the painting, for a wide public of all ages and backgrounds.

Art Fund Director Dr. Stephen Deuchar commented: “This is a truly unique opportunity to acquire a painting of such immense importance. Even for a museum collection as fine as the Fitzwilliam’s, this great Poussin would be a transformative acquisition. We salute the determined efforts of the Museum to acquire it for the public, and we urge anyone who cares about art to dig into their pockets and give what they can to help us reach our target.”

The Museum is appealing to all of its supporters to help in raising funds, including the Friends of the Fitzwilliam. The Museum has also applied to the Heritage Lottery Fund and together with the Art Fund will approach various other charitable institutions to contribute to the Appeal. Organisations should contact Development Officer Sue Rhodes at the Museum directly on 01223 332939; individuals can send a contribution in the form of a cheque made payable to the ‘Fitzwilliam Museum Development Trust’ to: The Development Office, the Fitzwilliam Museum, Trumpington Street, Cambridge, CB2 1RB, or give online at

Today's News

August 14, 2012

Cleveland Museum of Art acquires two stellar Classical and Pre-Columbian objects

Art Fund launches £3.9m appeal to acquire Nicolas Poussin masterpiece for the nation

Gagosian Gallery presents John Chamberlain Sculptures in NYC's Seagram Building Plaza

An important private collection of 19th century sculpture leads Christie's Decorative Arts Sale

A unique medal awarded to Chiang Kai-shek on offer at Spink's Hong Kong auction

Sotheby's appoints Dr. Tao Wang to head New York Chinese Works of Art Department

Kerlin Gallery presents summer group exhibition featuring new works by six artists

New works by six contemporary artists added to The Jewish Museum's permanent exhibition

Imperial Chinese porcelain to take centre stage this November at Eskenazi in London

Century of Royal London brought to life in Museum of London Royal Timetrip app

The Studio Museum announces 2012-13 Artists in Residence; chosen from a pool of over 200

Los Angeles County Museum of Art presents West Coast debut of experimental filmmaker Alia Syed

Akron Art Museum Director to step down after record tenure New Chief Curator to start August 20

Eric Knowles heads to Liverpool to unearth hidden gems for Bonhams

Famous street artists inspired by Klimt in live art show

Groundbreaking comic artist, educator Kubert dies

Lars Von Trier challenges the people to reinterpret six great works of art through the lens of their camera

4 dead, about 20 injured in big Seoul fire near a 600-year-old palace

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- Porsche Super Speedster offered for first time in 50 years at RM Sotheby's Porsche 70th Anniversary Auction

2.- Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens opens 'Storytelling: French Art from the Horvitz Collection'

3.- Gauguin: Voyage to Tahiti stars Vincent Cassel as the famed French artist

4.- Stunning colored diamonds expected to dazzle at Heritage Auctions' Summer Fine Jewelry Auction

5.- US designer Kate Spade found dead at 55

6.- Vincent Van Gogh painting sells for over 7 million euros: Artcurial auction house

7.- Sir Stanley Spencer painting discovered hidden under a bed during a drugs raid

8.- Oxford's Bodleian Libraries unveil UK's first major Tolkien exhibition in decades

9.- Major exhibition at the Guggenheim explores decades of work by Alberto Giacometti

10.- World's largest freshwater pearl goes for 320,000 euros

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher:Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful