12 December 2019
Art and objects from The Burrell Collection have been enjoyed by more than a million people nationally and internationally while its home in Glasgow is being refurbished. So far, more than 1.3 million people have visited exhibitions featuring works collected by Sir William Burrell.
The total number of visitors who have enjoyed objects from The Burrell Collection rises to over four million by including single loans of objects to museums which were not in temporary exhibitions when counting venue visits.
The tour which began in 2016, has seen parts of the collection going overseas for the first time since it was given to Glasgow. It will conclude next year before The Burrell Collection opens again to the public in Spring 2021.
Among the venues which hosted objects from The Burrell Collection are The British Museum which borrowed Rodin’s The Thinker, The National Gallery in London which displayed 22 works as part of Drawn in Colour: Degas from the Burrell and the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam hosted 25 paintings and works on paper and one stained glass object which made up more than half of an exhibition of the work of Matthijs Maris.
The Princess Royal and her husband were among the visitors to The Burrell Collection: A Voyage to Impressionism when it reached Shizuoka in Japan as part of a five venue tour of 80 paintings which will finish in early 2020. The Wagner Garden Carpet is due to finish its tour of North American venues next year.
Nearly 30 venues around the world will have hosted art from The Burrell Collection by the time the museum re-opens to the public. Included are loans to New York’s Metropolitan Museum and the Musée de Cluny in Paris.
Sir Angus Grossart, Chairman of The Burrell Renaissance said: “The extraordinary quality of The Burrell Collection has long deserved wider international recognition and The Burrell Renaissance seeks to achieve that by showing some of these magnificent treasures. When it re-opens in spring 2021, The Burrell Collection will bring international audiences to appreciate Sir William’s exceptional legacy.”
Dr Bridget McConnell, Chief Executive of Glasgow Life said: “There has been a huge appetite from museums visitors to enjoy artworks from The Burrell Collection wherever they have been on display. Without the ability to make these loans overseas, some of the displays and exhibitions simply wouldn’t have been possible. We are looking forward to more people learning about the wonders of The Burrell Collection through the final loan dates as we continue to work towards delivering a museum ready to welcome visitors from around the world.”
The ambitious refurbishment of the Burrell Collection building and redisplay of objects will allow visitors, for the first time, to explore all three floors which will be dedicated to galleries, visible stores and special exhibitions. More than 75 years of Sir William Burrell’s life were devoted to amassing one of the world’s greatest, single personal collections. The Burrell Collection is recognised as being of world-class quality, and reflects the outward looking, international confidence of the great collector.
The refurbishment will see the museum’s gallery space increase by 35% and public space increase by 83%, allowing important and unique objects from Burrell’s Collection which have not been seen for decades or have never been on permanent display to go on show for visitors to enjoy.
The cost of this major capital project for the city is estimated at £66 million with Glasgow City Council funding 50% of the overall project cost. Support from a variety of other funders has been overwhelming; donations and sponsorship from over 125 companies, trusts and foundations, and individuals, including £15million from the Heritage Lottery Fund, means over 97% of the funding is now in place.