Catch up on shows with The Coast On Demand
Thursday, August 23, 2012
Mr Bean did it with Whistler's Mother and now it's happened in real-life.
An elderly woman has destroyed a 19th-century Spanish fresco, trying to restore it without permission.
Elias Garcia Martinez’s work ‘Ecce Homo’, has been obliterated and the damage was only discovered after Martinez’s granddaughter made a donation a ciouple of weeks ago. to the Centro de Estudios Borjanos, which holds an archive of local religious artworks.
Staff then went to check on the work at the Santuario de Misericodia church in north eastern Spain and found the disastrous alterations.
In the first photograph, taken in 2010, slight speckling is apparent. In the second photograph, taken just last month, large patches of white dominate the picture. One theory is that the elderly woman had already begun her work on the painting at this point, and the white marks are the result of her scraping away the paint.
The third photograph shows the image transformed beyond recognition.
The restoration isn't thought to have been malicious, but definitely misguided.
Despite being a work of little artistic importance and not part of any painting or altarpiece, the image did have some local sentimental value.
The artist's family used to holiday in the area and one summer, he painted the portrait and gave it to the local people.
The damage is being assessed in an attempt to work out exactly what materials the amateur restorer used. The long-term hope, is that a professional may be able to remove the layers of paint and restore the work to some semblance of its former state.
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