Belfast Telegraph

Damaged Monet set to be repaired

Art experts are due to begin the delicate repair of a Monet painting which was extensively damaged as it hung in the National Gallery.

The 1874 work, Argenteuil with a Single Sailboat, was ripped and perforated while on display in the Millennium Wing in what the institution described as an unfortunate incident on June 29.

Sean Rainbird, director of the National Gallery of Ireland, said the conservation will take about a year.

"Conservation work on the Monet is our primary concern given the extensive nature of the damage," he said.

"The gallery's conservation department will begin a thorough assessment of the work to be carried out in consultation with colleagues in sister institutions. We anticipate the process of conservation could take up to a year."

Andrew Shannon, 47, from Willans Way, Ongar, Co Dublin, was charged with criminal damage to the painting. A court has been told that he will deny the charge.

The gallery said the Monet painting was under Garda control since the incident but has been handed back to allow urgent conservation to begin on Monday.

The work will be intricate and delicate. It is understood the first step will be to stabilise the painting in order to contain and eventually reduce the structural distortion of the canvas support.

Simone Mancini, Head of Conservation in the National Gallery of Ireland, said: "Our theoretical and technical conservation approach will be dictated by retaining the integrity and originality of the painting and it will encompass the application of the principle of reversibility, deceptivity and minimum intervention."

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