Fodor's Expert Review The Model: Home of the Niland Collection

Sligo Town Museum/Gallery
Free Fodor's Choice

The main attraction at the Model, housed in a school built in 1862, is one of Ireland's largest collections of works by 20th-century artists from home and abroad, as well as a stunning new collection of artwork acquired by the gallery in 2018. Each year, the Model displays six curated exhibitions from its collection, frequently featuring work by famed Irish painter Jack B. Yeats, who once said, "I never did a painting without putting a thought of Sligo in it." At the heart of the collection is the work amassed by the woman whose name the gallery now bears, Nora Niland, who was the Sligo librarian from 1945 until the late 1970s, and who recognized the importance of Jack B.'s work. Only a small selection of this work is on display at any time, but you can view the whole collection on the Model's website. Paintings such as The Funeral of Harry Boland and A Political Meeting (In the West of Ireland) by John Yeats (father of Jack B. and W.B.), who had a considerable reputation... READ MORE

The main attraction at the Model, housed in a school built in 1862, is one of Ireland's largest collections of works by 20th-century artists from home and abroad, as well as a stunning new collection of artwork acquired by the gallery in 2018. Each year, the Model displays six curated exhibitions from its collection, frequently featuring work by famed Irish painter Jack B. Yeats, who once said, "I never did a painting without putting a thought of Sligo in it." At the heart of the collection is the work amassed by the woman whose name the gallery now bears, Nora Niland, who was the Sligo librarian from 1945 until the late 1970s, and who recognized the importance of Jack B.'s work. Only a small selection of this work is on display at any time, but you can view the whole collection on the Model's website. Paintings such as The Funeral of Harry Boland and A Political Meeting (In the West of Ireland) by John Yeats (father of Jack B. and W.B.), who had a considerable reputation as a portraitist, also hang here on a rotating basis, as does work by Sean Keating and Paul Henry. Free informal curators' tours are held along with talks by the artist-in-residence. In 2018 a mystery donor, who bought items from a Yeats family collection auction in London, donated eight artworks—six paintings and two sketches—to the gallery. It includes what is regarded as John Yeats's masterpiece, his oil on canvas, Self-Portrait, New York, which at £87,500 was the most valuable item in the auction. The donation also included drawings and portraits by the artist of his children, William, Susan, Elizabeth, and Jack. The Model also has a 180-seat cinema with a program run in conjunction with the Irish Film Institute, and a good café. In 2015 the Yeats Secret Garden, an enclosed wildflower area behind the gallery, opened to the public. It represents W.B. Yeats's vision of a secret hideaway and comes complete with a makeshift mud cabin.

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Quick Facts

Sligo, Co. Sligo  Ireland

071-914–1405

www.themodel.ie

Sight Details:
Rate Includes: Free, Closed Mon.

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