National gallery to host impressionists


Ireland's National Art gallery is set to stage one of the most ambitious exhibitions in its history involving top European impressionists - on a date soon after the New Year introduction of the new euro currency.

The show, featuring works by Van Gogh, Monet, Renoir, Cezanne, Pissarro and others, will go on over an almost three-month-long period from January 22nd.

A total of 69 masterpieces from the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Massachusetts, will be on view at the exhibition, which is also marking the opening of the Dublin gallery's new Millennium wing.

Dublin is the only European venue for the event and the Irish gallery is anticipating an unprecedented demand for tickets from as many as 100,000 art enthusiasts.

For that reason, advance booking is already under way, using a ticket agency's telephone and Internet facilities, which request customers, where possible, to work out precisely when they will pay their visit.

Ms Fionnuala Croke, head of exhibitions at the National Gallery, said: "We are delighted to host this stunning show.

"We expect demand to be very high so we have introduced a timed ticketing system, which allows you to specify a date and time to come to the exhibition. We are encouraging people to book in advance."

The price of tickets ranges from €10 for families down to €3 for children under the age of 10, and school groups.