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Louvre’s Poussin masterpieces damaged after torrential rain hits Paris

Water seeped in to areas of the museum including the Islamic Art rooms and 17th-century French painting galleries

by Gareth Harris  |  17 July 2017
Louvre’s Poussin masterpieces damaged after torrential rain hits Paris
The Musée du Louvre in Paris (Image: © Demiannnn)
Officials at the Louvre in Paris say that "traces of water" were found last week on paintings by Nicolas Poussin and Jean François de Troy after heavy storms hit the capital (9-10 July). Other works under threat by Georges de la Tour and Eustache Le Sueur were subsequently placed in storage as a safeguard measure.
 
According to a museum statement, “water seeped into the mezzanine of the Denon wing (the Islamic Art and Eastern Mediterranean areas), the first floor of the Sully wing (Salle des Sept-Cheminées, Henri IV staircase) and the second floor of the Cour Carrée (certain French painting galleries).”
 
The affected areas remain closed while conservators continue to assess the damage done to two works in the Four Seasons paintings series by Poussin (Spring and Autumn, 1660-64) and De Troy’s Triumph of Mordecai (1736). All of the works were subsequently removed from display. 
 
Meanwhile, the Bibliothèque Nationale de France in Paris also suffered after water dripped from the ceiling in the medieval manuscripts section. "Nine books out of 143 are still drying, the others are back on the shelves,” Sylviane Tarsot, the director, told Le Monde, adding that the conservation team plans to restore 14 items.

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