Crack found in Three Graces
Friday 06 March 1998
The "very small fault", not visible to the naked eye, was discovered last November when the pounds 7.6m sculpture arrived in Madrid from Edinburgh. It was discovered, above the shoulder of one of the women, when the group was being inspected under strong lighting upon its arrival.
The work was on loan to Baron Heinrich Thyssen-Bornemisza, who gave pounds 800,000 towards its purchase. It is jointly owned by the National Museums of Scotland and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
The discovery alarmed both museums. Experts at the V & A rushed out to Madrid when they heard the news. And Richard Cook, its specialist conservator, travelled back with the sculpture to Edinburgh in a truck to monitor its condition. But the museum does not rule out the possibility that the crack may have always been present.
The disclosure could revive the debate about the risks of overseas lending, which last surfaced in Scotland when the Burrell Collection trustees in Glasgow unsuccessfully challenged a move by Glasgow museum officials to change the terms of that bequest to enable the collection to be shown overseas.
The Three Graces, commissioned from the Italian Antonio Canova by the Duke of Bedford at the start of the 19th century, has been the pride of the National Galleries for Scotland since its purchase in 1995.
A spokeswoman for the galleries said yesterday: "Detailed examinations of the statue in Edinburgh revealed that no further development of this fault has taken place."
- 1 The black and blue dress: Makers considering a white and gold version
- 2 Husband and wife die holding hands within hours of each other after 67 years of marriage
- 3 PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
- 5 Saudi Muslim cleric claims the Earth is 'stationary' and the sun rotates around it
Boris Nemtsov shot dead: Putin critic may have been murdered by Islamic extremists, says president-led committee
Stephen Hawking's wife Jane Wilde on their marriage breakdown: 'The family were left behind'
British are sexually uptight, dirty and drink too much – according to Spanish book
PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
White and gold or blue and black – what colour is the dress? An eyewitness gives a definitive answer
New theory could prove how life began and disprove God
This is what it's like to be dead, according to a guy who died for a bit
'Cash for access' scandal: Sir Malcolm Rifkind says 'unrealistic' for MPs to live on £67,000 salary
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
Russia's roadmap for annexing eastern Ukraine 'leaked from Vladimir Putin's office'
£9 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This role is based within a small family run ...
£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Design and marketing agenc...
£46000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This property investment firm are lookin...
£18000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company specialises provid...