Saturday, April 18, 2020

Atlanta History Center is honored by Georgia Trust for major restoration of Battle of Atlanta cyclorama painting

Restoration work in December 2017 (Atlanta History Center)

The Atlanta History Center has been recognized for its meticulous restoration of the Battle of Atlanta cyclorama painting, a 360-degree depiction of a critical moment in the July 1864 battle.

The Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation on Friday announced an Excellence in Restoration award to the center.

Completed in 1886 in Milwaukee, the cyclorama was show in a few cities before coming to Atlanta. The oil-on-canvas painting was displayed for decades in Grant Park but its condition deteriorated over the years and it needed a thorough restoration. In 2014, the city and the Atlanta History Center agreed to have it moved and restored at the center’s campus in the Buckhead neighborhood.

The massive painting was rolled into two scrolls and taken by truck to a new building at the history center. Swiss, German and American conservators spent months on the project and the painting and restored diorama opened to the public in February 2019.

“Through digital interactives, an introductory film projected onto the painting, and a variety of unique artifacts and activities, visitors to the new exhibit are encouraged to think critically about how history is made,” the Trust says of the exhibit.

Excellence in Restoration awards recognize projects that depict the form, features and character of a historic building as it appeared at a particular period of time. Restoration requires sensitive upgrading of mechanical systems and other code-required work to make the site functional. This year, the Trust presented three Excellence in Restoration awards.

1 comment:

  1. Congrats to all involved in this project. I hope that someday a video can be made of the new show, which I believe has the picture moving around a fixed stage, rather than the old mode of a fixed picture being viewed by an audience sitting in a slowly turning viewing stage? Whatever the new scheme, I hope those of us who can't travel (anymore) will be able to enjoy the show. Thank you, Ed Franks