England

Restored painting marks Queen Victoria’s 200th birthday

Detail of the Coronation of Queen Victoria by Edmund Thomas Parris (1793-1873) Image copyright Bradford museums
Image caption Artist Edmund Thomas Parris (1793-1873) was a history painter to King William IV's Queen Consort, Queen Adelaide, who Queen Victoria succeeded in 1837

A painting of Queen Victoria's coronation at Westminster Abbey has been restored for an exhibition to celebrate 200 years since her birth.

Edmund Thomas Parris's artwork of the 1838 coronation was loaned to Kensington Palace from Bradford Council's Museums and Galleries.

It reveals new detail and colours unseen for decades.

The artwork will go on display with clothing and jewellery worn by Queen Victoria at her coronation.

Art conservator David Everingham spent five months strengthening flaking paint, repainting parts, and removing dirt and discoloured varnish.

Image copyright Bradford museums
Image caption The restoration of the painting revealed "delicately-painted" faces which were until now over-painted, art restorer David Everingham said
Image copyright Bradford museums
Image caption Mr Everingham said "it was a special privilege" to see the painting come to life

During the restoration process, the artwork's original canvas lining and glues were scraped away, with a new polyester lining attached to provide long-term support.

Historic Royal Palaces, the independent charity which looks after Kensington Palace, paid for the work with Friends of Bradford Art Galleries and Museums funding a new bespoke gilt frame.

Image copyright Bradford museums
Image caption Princess Victoria was born at Kensington Palace in 1819, and the painting is on display along with clothes and jewellery she wore for the coronation

Mr Everingham said: ""It was a special privilege to see Queen Victoria, the Duke of Wellington, Bishops, family, and her extensive entourage come to life after years submerged beneath years of grime and yellow varnish.

"Should members of the Royal Family have the opportunity to see the painting, I hope they feel their ancestors have been honoured."

Maggie Pedley, of Bradford Council, said she was "delighted [that] the beautiful painting could be restored and have a frame that befits its magnificence.

She added: "An important painting that had previously been un-showable has now been secured a new lease of life."

Claudia Williams, of Historic Royal Palaces, said the painting offers "a wonderful rendition of both the intimacy and spectacle of this momentous occasion".

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