Business Irish

Wednesday 26 July 2017

National Gallery €30m revamp pushes it into the red with €3.9m loss

Bono and Ali Hewson admire The Taking of Christ by Michelangelo da Caravaggio in the National Gallery of Art in Dublin. Picture: Arthur Carron
Bono and Ali Hewson admire The Taking of Christ by Michelangelo da Caravaggio in the National Gallery of Art in Dublin. Picture: Arthur Carron

Gordon Deegan

Costs arising from the €30m refurbishment of the National Gallery contributed to a €3.9m loss in 2015, according to the gallery's newly released annual report.

It made an operating profit of €995,540 but a €5.5m cost from the renovation contributed to the overall loss.

Much of the gallery has been closed for the past six years for refurbishment works of its Dargan and Miltown Wings.

The project has been substantially delayed by a number of unforeseen structural problems but the refurbished gallery is due to open in the summer with a major international exhibition, 'Vermeer and the Masters of Genre Painting'.

The gallery had 700,000 visitors and with the increase primarily driven by an increase in overseas visitors to Ireland. "The change in visitor profile also saw a move from the 'excellent' satisfaction rating to the lower 'satisfied' rating in the visitor experience," the report said. "The continuation of the Master Development Plan Project during 2015, and the limited Irish collection on display were contributing factors for the decline in excellent visitor experience ratings."

The contribution from the Government dropped from €12m to €7.83m, while staff costs went from €4.7m to €5.58m with the spend on agency staff more than doubling from €115,082 to €241,597.

Numbers employed totalled 119, while the salary for the gallery's director, Sean Rainbird, was €96,551.

At the end of 2015, the gallery's balance sheet had net assets of €10.52m.

Irish Independent

Promoted articles

Also in Business