120 mins, France, 2019, Digital, Subtitled

IFI is proud to partner with the National Gallery for a very special event on Friday, February 28th.

Join one of the National Gallery’s highly trained guides for a tour with a new perspective. Spend one hour exploring the history of gender and sexual identity through a selection of works from the Gallery’s collection that are connected to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer community. Then, make your way to the IFI for a screening of Céline Sciamma’s critically acclaimed Portrait of a Lady on Fire.

The event will start at 16.30 at the National Gallery.  Please arrive 10 minutes before the start of the tour and check-in at the Merrion Square Information Desk. The tour will last approx. one hour.

Guests should then make their way to the IFI for the 18.15 screening of Portrait of a Lady on Fire; tickets for the screening will be available for collection at the IFI Box Office. Transport between the two venues is not provided.

Please note that this event is open to persons aged 16 years or over. Tickets €15 – free list suspended. Tickets for the gallery tour are not available separately.


Grieving for the death of her sister, Héloïse (Adèle Haenel) has returned from a convent to her home in Brittany; her mother (Valerie Golino), a widowed Italian noblewoman, has engaged Marianne (Noémie Merlant), an artist, to surreptitiously paint Héloïse’s portrait while acting on the pretence that she is to be a companion to the bereaved young woman. Previous painters have failed in the commission as Héloïse has refused to pose, aware the picture will be sent to the Milanese man to whom she has been betrothed by her mother, without introduction, and consequently Marianne must capture her likeness covertly. The two women gradually connect, and a subtle seduction of stolen glances, touches and conversation gives way to burning desire. Céline Sciamma’s delicate, beautifully acted fourth feature explores what it means to see, and to truly be seen.

(Notes by David O’Mahony)

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