Madonna with Child and Saints Peter and Paul

Oil painting on canvas
Unknown artist of the Fermo school, 17th or 18th century

Why did ArteProArte fund this work?

Hanging in the town hall for at least 50 years, the residents of Smerillo have grown very fond this painting. With an idealised village similar to Smerillo in the background, it has been cared for by a dynamic comune who work hard to create a sustainable future for its inhabitants. 

The painting had failed to attract funding from other sources.

How was the artwork damaged by the earthquake?

The town hall itself was severely damaged by the earthquake. The room where the painting hung suffered falling masonry, leaving dust all over the surface of the painting, as well as small abrasive holes. Its original wooden frame and backing were damaged to the extent of not supporting the painting properly.

What conservation was carried out?

First the painting was removed from its frame and backing, and the dust from the earthquake was delicately cleaned off. Using natural paste glues to help support the original canvas, a new layer of backing linen was added. The picture was then remounted onto a new frame of sustainable fir. The paint surface was carefully cleaned, and in the process appropriate solvents, and occasionally a scalpel, were used to remove previous poorly done retouches.  The small holes were filled and delicately retouched, so as to make future removal simple if need be.

A final sealant was applied.

Who carried out the conservation?

Marco Salusti, a local accredited conservator carried out the work, meaning the funds supported a craftsman of Le Marche.

How long did it take?

It took approximately four months to complete.

Where is the painting now?

The painting is hanging in the Pinacoteca of Smerillo for all visitors to enjoy.