Saved – Restored works of the East Slovak Gallery damaged by fire

opening: July 3, 2020 at 10:30
duration: 4 July 2020 - 8 November 2020
curators: Katarína Nádaská, Miroslav Kleban
restorer: Ludmila Zozuľáková
Central Slovak Gallery, Dolná 8, Banská Bystrica

With the exhibition "Saved", we present to the Banská Bystrica audience the project of restoring the works of the East Slovak Gallery from 2017-2019. The set of exhibited works belongs to the main collections of the collection of the East Slovak Gallery: art of the 19th century, modern Košice and art of the second half of the 20th century. The works were damaged by a gallery fire in 1985. At the exhibition, we present almost 30 paintings, restored in the first and second phases of the project. They were comprehensively restored by Ludmila Zozuľáková. Jana Križanová and Barbora Němečková collaborated on the restoration of the works on paper. The gallery is currently continuing the third phase of the restoration of the works.
The exhibition attractively presents the restored works to the public in a broader context, and in the documentation part it also recalls the event of the fire of 1985. The public is not usually aware of the demanding process of protecting the gallery's collection. Therefore, we come up with an exhibition that reveals the long-term restoration work and its contribution to the care of the gallery's collection items.
The restoration brought new knowledge to the works in question and enabled their return to full gallery operation after more than three decades. The exhibition introduces visitors to restoration procedures and surveys such as UV preview, X-ray scanning and microscopic analysis.
An important part of the exhibition is the digital content that was created during the restoration. The exhibition is enriched by two interactive exhibits and one audiovisual presentation. In the form of a game, the visitor experiences the position of a restorer and the experience of working on a destroyed work up to the result in the form of a restored work. The artistic-historical dimension of the performance of the works is connected with the technical-restoration aspect and the educational-interactive experience.
After the restoration, the works are returned to the depository fully capable of all acts of presentation, education and research work. We want the presented journey of the work back to gallery life to be an enriching experience for the visitor. It is a little-known dimension of the appreciation of cultural heritage, which, however, belongs to all of us. The protection of the common entrusted cultural heritage is a service to society.

The restoration project and the exhibition were supported by the Art Support Fund and the Košice Self-Governing Region.

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