Published on Wednesday6thDecember2017

National Gallery of Ireland attracts over a million visitors in 2017

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Minister for Culture Josepha Madigan TD pictured above with the Director of the National Gallery of Ireland, Sean Rainbird.

Over one million visitors have been welcomed by the National Gallery of Ireland in 2017, in what has been a phenomenal year for the Gallery. Attendance figures for the Gallery have increased by over 100% since the reopening in June of the refurbished galleries on Merrion Square. It follows on the success of the reconceived permanent collection, tailored education programming and the outstanding quality of exhibitions on Leonardo da Vinci, Caravaggio, Margaret Clarke, Vermeer, Käthe Kollwitz, William Orpen, and Frederic William Burton.


Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan TD congratulated the Gallery on its wonderful attendance record and programming, and said:

“This significant milestone of one million visitors at the National Gallery is a true success story and indicative of the benefit of significant capital and ongoing Government support of our National Cultural Institutions. It is also a testament to the superb work of the Board and staff of the Gallery on producing a cultural space of excellent international standing and renown.”


Welcoming new Minister for Culture, Josepha Madigan TD, Sean Rainbird, Director, National Gallery of Ireland, said:

“We are delighted to welcome our new Minister for Culture, Josepha Madigan to the Gallery today to celebrate our record visitor attendances in 2017. This has been an extraordinary year for the Gallery. We have enjoyed welcoming so many visitors from Ireland and oversees to explore the national collection within these beautifully restored galleries on Merrion Square. We look forward to building on the success of the refurbishment and the positive feedback of our visitors with a renewed confidence in the future development and expansion of the Gallery.”


The Gallery’s wide-ranging public education programme of events tailored to suit all age groups, attracted over 95,000 people in 2017. This represents a 12% increase on numbers in 2016. 

There has also been an overwhelming response to the Gallery’s online platforms (website and social media), with 1.5million digital visits in 2017, of which 870,000 were visitors to the website,, representing a 79% increase on 2016.