Gallery rolls out gi­ant art

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS -

THE big­gest paint­ing at the Na­tional Gallery of Vic­to­ria will go on public dis­play to­day af­ter be­ing rolled up in stor­age for more than 70 years.

The 500kg work, painted in 1872, has been re­turned to its for­mer glory fol­low­ing a painstak­ing 10- week restora­tion.

Gallery staff were over­joyed to fi­nally hang Moses bring­ing down the Ta­bles of the law, which took ac­claimed his­tor­i­cal artist John Rogers Herbert six years to paint.

“It re­ally is a big mo­ment and there’s peo­ple all around Mel­bourne who know about the paint­ing and are dy­ing to see it,” head of con­ser­va­tion Michael Var­coe- Cocks said.

“It’s a se­ri­ously amaz­ing paint­ing.”

The im­pos­ing work is so large ( 6m x 4m) that it did not fit through any door­ways or in lifts. It needed to be rolled up on large cylin­ders to be moved into the gallery with the heavy frame in six pieces.

Mr Var­coe- Cocks said 24 staff worked on the restora­tion.

“It was a slow, elab­o­rate and com­plex process be­cause the paint­ing is so big,” he said.

Pic­ture: DAVID CAIRD

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