Monday, October 28, 2013

Joan Returns

Our beloved Jeanne d'Arc marble statue, known to locals as Joan, has returned from her holiday in storage and taken up pride of place in the gallery foyer.

She arrived in a crate, trolley-jacked into the gallery with the sort of delicate care you would afford any 100 year-old lady coming back from an extended holiday.

On hand were the remarkable TED Fine Art Handling Services, led by Ben, who could not have been more careful, calm and considered with their treatment of Joan. Measuring everything twice, discussing each move prior to making it, and quietly going about their work with choreographed finesse.

Produced by Raffaello Romanelli in the latter part of his career, this figurative work is an exquisite piece of sculpture made from the finest Carrara marble. Romanelli was an Italian sculptor from Florence, whose works are distributed around the world, including Rome, Florence, Siena, Romania, Detroit, Philadelphia and Cape Town.

Joan has taken up her new position in the gallery foyer area, watching over the visitors and casting her gaze out of the eastern windows to watch the daily sunrise. The history of Jeanne d'Arc is a fascinating one, not least for her efforts at leading an army as a teenager, her untimely and gruesome death, and for her elevation to Sainthood. As a work of art Joan attracts a great deal of attention and is fondly looked upon by the community. The detailing in her clothing, from the chain-mail of her skirt to the patterning on her cloak, is especially mesmerising. Her confident stance and focused gaze make her all the more spectacular.

You can watch the arrival of Joan in this video documentary filmed at the Town Hall Gallery:

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