Portrait of a Gallery
Portrait of a Gallery • Documentary, 17-Apr-2017
In 2011, the National Gallery of Ireland, the country’s most visited cultural attraction, closed the doors on the historic Victorian buildings comprising two thirds of its floor space, to begin one of the largest refurbishment projects in the history of the state. The objective was to transform these impressive buildings back to their original beauty while creating one of the most impressive modern gallery spaces in Europe.
The project proved to be a much greater challenge than expected for the architects and construction team. After numerous delays and costing close to €30 million, the NGI finally re-opened its historic Dargan and Milltown wings in June 2017.
The filmmakers secured unique access inside the walls of the National Gallery of Ireland observing the building project as it slowly progresses overcoming the setbacks, reversing past misguided alterations and restoring sections to their original state. Meanwhile on the other side of a cordon, the NGI continued to put on exhibitions and sustain an on-going programme of activity in the remaining third of its premises that it kept open to the public.