News story

Poussin Painting at risk of export

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Ed Vaizey issues temporary export bar to help find a UK buyer.

The painting by Nicolas Poussin depicting the moment the infant Moses trampled Pharaoh’s crown, will be exported overseas unless a matching offer of £14,000,000 is made. The Culture Minister issued the temporary export bar in the hope that a UK buyer can be found in the time allowed.

Ed Vaizey took the decision following a recommendation by the Reviewing Committee on the Export of Works of Art and Objects of Cultural Interest (RCEWA), administered by Arts Council England. The RCEWA made its recommendation on the grounds that the painting is of outstanding aesthetic importance and significance for the study of Poussin’s art.

Of the 30 or so paintings by Poussin in UK galleries and museums, none are quite so insistently severe in either their colouring or composition as this piece.

The decision on the export licence application for the painting will be deferred until 22 April 2014, although this may be extended until 22 October if a serious intention to raise funds to purchase the painting at the recommended price is made.

Poussin Painting press notice (MS Word Document, 94.5KB) with further details.

View the painting on Flickr