Park Lane Fine Arts
Original Oils & Watercolours
Specialists in Restoration, Cleaning and Framing

Proprietor: Lorna S. Valentine-Daines
102 The Street, Ashtead, Surrey, KT21 1AW
Tel: (01372) 277284 (24 Hours)
Mobile: 07940 677932
email: Lorna Valentine-Daines

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A Recent Restoration Project

In early 2002, the client took charge of this painting when an elderly relative entered a nursing home. It had been stored in an upstairs annexe and had not seen the light of day for many years, probably not since the end of the 1939-45 War. The painting was in a very bad state and had probably been kept in a damp atmosphere. The canvas was torn in many places, the paint was flaking and it was black with decades of dirt, probably soot from oil lamps. To give you an idea of the scale of the project, the painting, in its frame, measures approximately 34" x 60".

The remedial work involved the lining of the original canvas, stabilising the paint and repairing the damage to the canvas. After this work was completed, with the painting stabilised, it was then possible to clean the painting and re-touch and re-paint the damaged areas, which were mainly sky and sea. The restored canvas was then varnished.

Using the clues that have been uncovered in the restoration, the client has been able (with the assistance of the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, and the Public Record Office) to discover some of the background to the painting. The largest ship depicted is a first-rate 100-gun ship of the line, flying the Lord High Admiral's flag and the Royal Standard. The scene depicted appears to be a review of the fleet by a flagship (probably with the Sovereign on board) which is being saluted by another British vessel possibly in the Straits between Gibraltar and Ceuta and can be dated to post-1714 as it is flying the Standard of the Hanoverian Navy, or it may depict the peace after the signing of the Treaty of Utrecht in 1713, which ended the Spanish War of Succession and ceded Gibraltar to England in 1714.

The client was delighted with the result, especially considering the very poor initial condition of the painting.

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