Panorama of the Battle of Trafalgar

Valentine also undertakes large in situ projects for example, the removal, lining and hanging of a curved panorama for the National Museum of the Royal Navy, Portsmouth. The painting measured 12 ft x 42 ft (3.6m x 12.8m).

The painting’s hanging mechanism was beginning to fail and the paint was cracking and flaking off. The whole surface was covered in a thick yellow varnish layer. The images below show the transformation of the panorama.

The image below shows the panorama partially cleaned. After cleaning, the painting was faced and rolled onto a cylinder for transportation to a studio for lining. This required the ingenuity of an engineer to make a floor track and then a cradle for the cylinder and then a crane to lift it into the studio.

Once in the studio the painting was unrolled. Because it had been painted on a curve it was necessary to create a temporary support so that it could be lined in the same curvature – see images below.

Once supported by the new lining canvas the panorama was placed back in the Museum on the new mechanism which reduces the uneven strain on the canvas. Finally the paint losses were filled and the painting was restored using reversible paint medium and then varnished using a conservation grade varnish.

Please click here for more information from the National Museum Royal Navy Portsmouth’s website.