The Malta Independent 22 August 2019, Thursday

Mapfre MSV Life supports major restoration project to save iconic paintings at Nadur church

Thursday, 8 August 2019, 14:59 Last update: about 13 days ago

Mapfre MSV Life is supporting a major project that is set to commence in the coming weeks that involves extensive restoration and conservation works on the marouflage paintings by Guzeppi Briffa (1901-1987) found at the Sacred Heart of Jesus church in Nadur, Gozo.

The sponsorship was presented by David Demarco, chief Financial officer of Mapfre MSV life during a visit to the church where he met Amy Sciberras, the fine arts conservator and restorer who is spearheading this project following extensive studies that she carried out over the past years on the state of these paintings. Also present was Justine Balzan Demajo who is supporting the fund-raising efforts required for this project.

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Sciberras explained that the restoration programme aims to conserve and restore the iconic works of Guzeppi Briffa; his marouflage paintings that decorate the entire ceiling and dome are of historical and artistic significance. The marouflage painting technique relies on the attachment of canvases to the wall by means of an adhesive, thus becoming an integral part of the architectural structure. Besides Briffa's marouflages decorating the dome, nave, transepts and the choir, other important art works within the church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus include the canvas paintings which decorate the lower walls and are all works of renowned artists such as Giacomo D'Esposito (1856-1921), Filippo Venuti (XIX) and Lazzaro Pisani (1854-1932).

Demarco said that Mapfre MSV Life was delighted to extend its support towards this project as part of its contribution towards our cultural heritage. "This project will add value to our communities through the preservation of these paintings of important artistic and historical significance ensuring that they can continue to be appreciated by future generations," said Demarco. He congratulated Sciberras and her team for undertaking such an important and ambitious initiative.

The conservation and restoration include the urgent repairs of the architectural fabric, the improvement of the roofing system and installation of downpipes, repairs of aperture, first-aid treatments of the marouflage paintings - both in the nave and the dome, and full conservation-restoration treatments of the ceiling and dome marouflage paintings.

 


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