The Gallery archive contains the official records of the institution. It reflects the history of the Gallery from the 1850s to the present day. This is a valuable source for those interested in the development of the Gallery and its involvement in Irish cultural affairs since its foundation. The collection includes detailed archives relating to the establishment of the Gallery and the work of the Irish Institution; a complete set of minute books recording meetings of the Board since 1855; records documenting the development of the Gallery's collection including registers of paintings, prints, sculpture etc. The archive also contains papers relating to the Directors and staff of the Gallery such as Hugh Lane, Thomas McGreevy, Brinsley MacNamara and James Stephens. Information on the development of the Gallery building and architectural plans also form part of the archive.
The Yeats archive
This archive consists of a prestigious collection of material donated to the Gallery by Anne Yeats in 1996 and several additional collections acquired since. Relating to Jack B. Yeats and members of his extended family, the archive include highlights such as the artist's sketchbooks, books from Yeats’s own library, a collection of journals, theatre programmes, original manuscripts, and photographs.
Sir Denis Mahon library and archive
Sir Denis Mahon (1910-2011) was one of the foremost scholars and collectors of his generation. In 2010 he presented his personal library and archive to the Gallery. The books and documentation represent decades of research and scholarship particularly in the area of Italian Baroque art. This remarkable gift greatly enhances the research resources relating to European art available in Ireland.