While the Musée de l'Armée - Invalides has just completed the restoration of the Salle Royale, one of the four emblematic refectories of the Invalides, a new renovation project has begun in the Salle de l'Europe, designed as its counterpart. Formerly a refectory for the Invalides boarders, it is now one of the main rooms in the "Ancient weapons and armour" itinerary, devoted to the activities of the great European armoury workshops of the 16th century.
Dôme des Invalides © Paris - Musée de l’Armée – Anne-Sylvaine Marre-Noël
As part of this renovation project, the Fondation Etrillard is providing funding for the restoration of L'Allégorie de Louis XIV, overhanging the north entrance to the hall and attributed to Michel II Corneille. Executed in oil on plastered stone, this large historical and mythological mural depicts King Louis XIV accompanied by Bellona, Minerva and Victory, heading towards the Meuse, which already appears subdued. The last restoration work was carried out half a century ago, but the frieze is now at risk.
The most recent restoration work was carried out half a century ago, but the frieze is now in danger of being damaged, as the paint layer has been lifted several times.
The three-year restoration project will restore the frieze's symbolic importance within the regal building. It will also enable the Musée de l'Armée's experts to refine their knowledge of the work's various repaints and the painting techniques used. A mediation programme will accompany its restoration.
L’Allégorie de Louis XIV © Paris - Musée de l'Armée Dist. RMN-Grand Palais – Pascal Segrette