- May 2011
- Rural Australia
Here is the section about restoration:Also at Yale they have considered Peppard's opinion [I've made a quick search and I've found what I expected ... obviously at Yale they have pondered such a "discovery"].
[Yale Art Gallery painting might be oldest known image of the Virgin Mary]
And we read something relevant for our discussion: there was a recent heavy restoration of the pieces, as we read at the end of the article.
Dura-Europos is located in eastern Syria under the control of the Islamic State. In recent years, it has been heavily looted and damaged. “The fact that the site itself is basically gone now makes the fact that we have this collection preserved, on view, and cared for, together with the context provided by the excavation records, that much more important,” Brody said.
Following their discovery, conservators coated the wall paintings in polyvinyl acetate to prevent flaking. Considered a state-of-art technique at the time, the treatment proved to be unstable. In the 1970s, the paintings had deteriorated so much that they were transferred from their plaster backing to fiberglass.
“It was a drastic measure, but it was considered necessary,” Brody said.
In preparation for their installation in the art gallery’s Dura-Europos exhibit, the paintings were restored based on the photographs and drawings from the excavation.
“Normally, we would not perform such restoration of an ancient wall painting, but we decided it was necessary,” Brody said. “We didn’t try to make them look like new, but using the photographic documentation of the excavation, we tried as much as possible to make them look as they appeared in 1932 when they were discovered.”
Back to the photographic evidence ...