HUGE HISTORIC RESTORATION PROJECT
ON VIEW AT ST. LOUIS ART MUSEUM
The world's largest panoramic canvas (348-feet wide)
is undergoing a restoration and conservation effort
in a rare public display at the St. Louis Art Museum.
On continuous public view in the main exhibition gallery,
an historic panoramic painting by John Egan is
being restored, panel by panel,
which depicts 19th century Native American life
along the Mississippi River Valley.
The massive panorama painting was commissioned
by Dr. M. W. Dickeson, a physician and amateur archeologist,
in 1844, to accompany his traveling lectures
about Indian life, culture and mounds through the area.
The 92" high continuous muslin roll resembles
an old Instamatic film cartridge
with cylinders on either side.
Through years of use, the fabric rolls have deteriorated;
the restoration will preserve and restore cracked creases
and missing areas of pigment.
The four panel areas shown here include:
(1) camp site along the Mississippi River,
(2) Chiefs in costume, including mounds and monuments,
(3) Carved rock cliffs with colossal rock bust in river,
(4) 1844 tornado which caused damage to Indians,
white settlers and negro slaves alike.
The restoration will be on view publicly through August,
and is expected to last more than a year!
(Once finished, the total canvas will be on display
in the museum's new expansion addition.)