Hof Bladelin

Raphael’s frescos go on show in Bruges

After four years of restauration four frescos by the world-famous Italian painter Raphael are now on view to the general public for the first time in Bruges (West Flanders).  The frescos can be admired at Hof Bladelin, a 15th century city palace.

The frescos painted in the 1520s were in a dreadful state.  Their restauration was quite a challenge given their size.  David Lainé and his team at IPARC, the International Platform for Art Research and Conservation, were in charge of the restauration: “Paint was coming loose all over the place.  The frescos had become very dark.  On some you couldn’t make anything out anymore.  They were full of holes and tears.  It was dreadful.”

Some of the works measure nearly 8 metres by 3m50 posing quite a challenge.

“The smaller ones could go through the door or the window.  The two larger ones were rolled up on large rolls and a specialised firm transported them to our studio in Kalmthout”.

The Raphaels have been hanging at Hof Bladelin in Bruges for nearly two centuries.  Few people knew about them because they were not on public show.  Their owners decided to get them restored and to grant the public admittance.  At the minute the frescos can only be viewed as part of a guided tour.

Hof Bladelin

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