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UK museums see significant drop in visitor figures

2 February 2017

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

UK museums see drop in visitor numbers | According to figures released by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, museums in the UK saw an overall drop in visitor numbers from April 2015 to March 2016. The numbers show that over that period, attendance fell to 47.6 million visits, down by 6.2 per cent on 2014/15. The data, which was taken from studies of the UK’s 15 state sponsored museums, also showed a significant drop in visits from children and young people, and an overall decrease in domestic visitors. The British Museum, according to the figures, was the most visited museum in 2015-16, with the Tate group and National Gallery ranking second and third.

Dutch government earmarks nearly €8 million to Holocaust Museum | The government of the Netherlands has announced a subsidy of nearly €8 million towards the ongoing development of Amsterdam’s Holocaust Museum and a wall commemorating the victims of the catastrophe. The museum, which opened last year, will receive €5.6 million, while a further €2.3 million will be allocated for the construction of the commemorative wall. It is hoped that the additional funding will help the institution to operate on a par with more established Holocaust museums. ‘The murder of 102,000 Dutch Jews, Roma and Sinti is hard to grasp,’ said State Secretary for Health, Welfare and Sport Martin van Rijn. ‘It therefore remains forever our duty to remember and commemorate them.’

Paris’s CNAP to relocate to Pantin | France’s Centre National des Arts Plastiques (CNAP) has announced plans to relocate from its current home in the La Défense business district to a former industrial zone in Pantin, in Paris’s north-eastern suburbs. According to Le Monde (French language article), the institution will move to Pantin in 2020, joining established arts institutions including the largest branch of the Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac. Founded in 1982, the CNAP is intended to support and promote artistic creation. Its collection, currently distributed between three different spaces, numbers up to 100,000 works.

Art theft in Johannesburg leaves gallerist ‘baffled’ | Thieves who stole five works of art from a gallery in Norwood, Johannesburg, have left the business’s owner ‘baffled’, reports the Times (South Africa). Darren Neophytou, owner of the Daville Baillie Gallery, says the armed thieves targeted specific works, valued at R600000 (around £3,500) by artists Richard Scott, Fringe and Wakaba Mutheki. Neophytou, however, says that the works in question are easily identifiable, and that the thieves would have difficulty selling them on the market.

Peter Keller appointed director of ICOM | Salzburg Cathedral Museum head Peter Keller has been appointed as the next director general of the International Council of Museums. Keller, who is currently serving his second mandate as ICOM treasurer, has considerable experience in the field, having served in several roles for the body, including Chair and Secretary of the organisation’s International Committee for Historic House Museums. Keller, whose appointment was effective as of yesterday (1 February) succeeds Anne-Catherine Robert-Hauglustaine, who has been in the role since 2014.