A 19TH-CENTURY PAINTING by French Impressionist Claude Monet has been seriously damaged in an incident at the National Gallery of Ireland today.
A man has been detained after he interfered with the signed, 1874 oil-on-canvas entitled ‘Argenteuil Basin with a single Sailboat’ between 11.30am and noon today. Gardaí said the man in his 40s was arrested as part of an investigation into criminal damage. He is being questioned at Pearse Street station.
The National Gallery confirmed that there was an “unfortunate incident” and that the painting has now been removed from its place in room 10 of the lower base wing for assessment by conservation staff.
A spokesperson for the gallery said the matter is being dealt with by the Gardaí.
Seán Rainbird, Director of the National Gallery described today’s events as “shocking” and “very regrettable”. He praised both the Gardaí and gallery staff for “dealing promptly with the matter”.
The painting was cleaned quite recently to reveal the original vivacity of colours and distinctive ‘broken’ brushwork that were key markers of Impressionism.
Gardaí have asked anyone who visited the gallery this morning to contact them at Pearse Street on 01 666 9000.
Image: Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland