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National Gallery curators to give talks from home

The gallery is launching a digital programme, while closed under lockdown, to help mental well-being.

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The National Gallery in London’s Trafalgar Square remains closed (Aaron Chown/PA)

The National Gallery in London’s Trafalgar Square remains closed (Aaron Chown/PA)

The National Gallery in London’s Trafalgar Square remains closed (Aaron Chown/PA)

Curators at the National Gallery are hoping to give people an art education from their living rooms.

The gallery is launching a digital programme, while closed under lockdown, to help mental well-being.

The first of the talks – given by curators from their homes – will look at paintings that celebrate domestic activities.

A series of online tutorials on “slow looking” will show visitors how to look in-depth and explore hidden details in works of art.

The gallery said it has seen a record increase in online visits since it closed its Trafalgar Square building.

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Francesca Whitlum Cooper filmed at home talking about Vermeer’s Young Woman Standing at a Virginal from the National Gallery’s Collection (The National Gallery, London)

Francesca Whitlum Cooper filmed at home talking about Vermeer’s Young Woman Standing at a Virginal from the National Gallery’s Collection (The National Gallery, London)

Francesca Whitlum Cooper filmed at home talking about Vermeer’s Young Woman Standing at a Virginal from the National Gallery’s Collection (The National Gallery, London)

National Gallery director Gabriele Finaldi said: “The last time the gallery closed the doors on the pictures for a long period was during the Second World War when the pianist Dame Myra Hess organised a musical programme here, planning a concert at lunchtime every single weekday throughout the war and continuing into 1946.

“It is a very remarkable National Gallery story and we consider ourselves the heirs of Myra Hess’s spirit as we plan our activities while the gallery’s building is temporarily closed.”

Other talks will include suggestions for making and creating art at home from newspapers and magazines, and Van Gogh’s Sunflowers as a starting point to explore “four fun drawing techniques for people to try at home”.

– See www.nationalgallery.org.uk/stories/a-curated-look-working-from-home for information

PA Media