Retired senator Douglas Everett donated Afternoon Tea, a large canvas painted by Sir John Everett Millais, to the Winnipeg Art Gallery in memory of his wife Patricia, the gallery announced this week.

The painting dates to 1889, and the art gallery describes the donation as a "coup" for the WAG, as it Afternoon Tea is one handful of paintings in Canadian collections by Millais, a leading 19th century British artist.

The painting was adjudged by the Canadian Cultural Property Review Board as being of "outstanding significance and national importance," and is valued at $2.75 million.

The donation is one of the largest gifts of an individual artwork to the WAG in its 98-year history, officials with the art gallery said.