On Friday 28 March, His Royal Highness The Earl of Wessex met key funders and supporters of Manchester Art Gallery at a special event marking 2008 as the gallery’s 125th anniversary.
Business leaders and representatives of trusts and foundations who have provided invaluable support during and since the gallery's refurbishment in 2002 were among invited guests who welcomed His Royal Highness. A number of families and participants from the gallery's ongoing community and education projects were also present.
Manchester Art Gallery will be launching a series of fundraising activities around its 125th anniversary later this year. The gallery has a long history of support from local businesses. The forerunner to Manchester Art Gallery - The Royal Manchester Institution was set up in 1824 thanks to £23,000 of funds raised by public subscriptions. More recently, businesses have continued to play a key role in the funding of Manchester Art Gallery. For the recent Art Treasures exhibition, more than £200,000 was secured from five commercial sponsors and private donors including Astrazenca, Bruntwood, CTP, Ian Simpson Architects, Property Alliance, Sir John Zochonis and Jack Livingstone.
Cllr Amesbury, Assistant Executive Member for Arts and Leisure commented: "It's 125 years since Manchester Art Gallery first opened to the public, and there's lots to look forward to. This year includes some fantastic free exhibitions for visitors. In June the gallery will launch a new family-friendly exhibition based around the work of author and illustrator Lauren Child whose best-selling books star Charlie and Lola and Clarice Bean. Historic art shows will include the first exhibition dedicated to works by pre-Raphaelite artist Holman Hunt for over 30 years (opening this October) and a touring exhibition of drawings by Leonardo da Vinci from the Royal Collection (opening in February 2009)."
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