Centuries old statue restored

The restoration team was led by Silvano Acosta, a Tenerife based conservationist

The Catholic See of Tenerife with the Cabildo heritage secion and the Adeje Santa Úrsula parish church have released details of the completion of the restoration of a statue of St Paul, in which he is carrying book of the epistles in the folds of his cloak.

The team charged with the restoration were led by Silvano Acosta, a Tenerife-based restorer and conservation expert, and used a technique to set the original polychrome pieces, using original glues to repair parts of the sculpture manually. The work was delicate as the team didn’t want “to lose materials during the conservation process and worked in very specific zones, never in a general way, on crests and elevated sides”, said the expert. All of the affected parts were reconstructed and cracks were filled in using polyvinyl glues, and the sculpture was cleaned.

 

According to information found in the official archives, the statue of St Paul was located on the main altar piece in the San Francisco Convent (of Our Lady of Guadalupe and St Paul) founded in 1679 by the first Marques of Adeje, Juan Bautista de Ponte Fonte y Pages. The first altar disappeared and was replaced with an 18th century style until 1841 when it was brought to the church in San Antonio Abad in Arona.

According to Acosta, this statue bears “the influence of the house of Martín de Andujar. We are probably looking at a sculpture from his school, perhaps the artist was part of the Garachico School of the time. The style is archaic but wasn’t popular. It would appear to have been inspired by pre-existing models from the time”.

St Paul carries a new-style sword in his left hand, which we see from the 13th Century onwards. This is a double-edged sword alluding, one side, to his martyrdom and on the other, the radical style of his writings.

 

Department of Communications

 

 

 

 

 

 

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