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Pilgrim Trust Conservation Grant – Lyme Regis Museum
Remedial conservation – Conservation of the Landslide panel
AIM grant: £2,000
The Bidon Landslide panel is an oil-on-board heptatych, recording the popularity of the site of a landslide in Devon in 1840.
We acquired the panel in 2017, but it was so dirty that you could hardly see what had been painted, the boards were warped, the frame was about to fall apart and there were with scratches and signs of water drip marks across the front.
Conservation, by Alison Smith ACR, was essentially that conventional for oil paintings: cleaning, stablishing, some retouching, re-varnishing and frame repair, but the results are stupendous! Never in our wildest dreams would we have expected such fine detail to be revealed in glorious natural colours, with the bonus of the pictures being full of life, of visitors in period costume and some local boatmen. It is already on temporary display pending a re-arrangement of our Landslip Gallery to accommodate it, where it will join a plaster model and engravings of the landslide.
Conservation has re-awakened enjoyment of an historic artwork of local and national interest for public display and geological science – and revealed period social detail.
Richard Bull BSc (Geol), Hon Curator, Lyme Regis Museum
Pictured: The Bindon Landslip Heptaptych Panel of August 1840 after conservation