Curatorial meetings have always focused primarily on the Collection: specifically, they provide a forum for curatorial staff to discuss potential acquisitions and loans. Minutes for staff meetings between 1973 and 1977 are brief and curatorial concerns form the core of discussions: notable portrait sales, potential loans, acquisitions and valuations. Given the Gallery's limited size at this time, they also cover other areas of activity such as staffing and recruitment, exhibitions, buildings, display of the Collection, admissions, merchandising and publicity. In c1984 meetings became more exclusively curatorial in focus, concentrating on discussion of loans out, offers and acquisitions, exhibition loans, proposals and scheduling. Currently curatorial meetings are used to discuss portraits offered to the Gallery, portraits available for sale, the progress of commissioned works, and requests for loans of works from the Gallery's Collections to external organisations. All potential acquisitions are discussed at curatorial meetings, and those that are approved are then passed on to the Trustees for final approval.
Prior to 1983 the names of attendees are not noted but the minutes suggest that meetings were attended by the Director and senior staff from across the Gallery. There is a gap in the record between 1990 and 1993 and records from 1994 onwards indicate that meetings were attended by the Director and curatorial staff only. Currently meetings are attended by the Director, the Chief Curator & Deputy Director, and all other members of the curatorial team.
The series includes minutes only. There are no minutes for meetings held in 1979 and 1990-1993.