Manet's Portrait of Mademoiselle Claus to stay in UK after export ban

9 August 2012

The Ashmolean Museum in Oxford raised the £7.83m needed to acquire Edouard Manet's portrait of Mademoiselle Claus, an exquisite 19th century painting. The fundraising campaign to keep the acclaimed 19th century impressionist painting in the UK has been successful.

Painted in 1868, the subject of the portrait is Fanny Claus, a close friend of Manet's wife Suzanne Leenhoff. The painting, regarded as one of the most important of the 19th Century, has been in Britain since its sale following the artist's death in 1884.

After the painting was sold to a foreign buyer for £28.35m, Culture Minister Ed Vaizey put an export ban on the work until 7 August because of its outstanding cultural importance. The painting was offered to the museum minus tax at £7.83m. The museum announced the money has been raised before the temporary export bar was due to be lifted and the painting sold.

The campaign received £5.9m from the Heritage Lottery Fund, and a grant of £850,000 from The Art Fund. The final £1,080,000 was made up of donations from trusts, foundations and private individuals over eight months.

A significant consequence of the sale is an agreement to send the work on a tour of galleries and museums in 2013.

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