About the ProjectWorking in the Main Exhibition Galleries, a team of conservators will provide visitors the unique opportunity to view the restoration of this 348-foot-long painting.
Click here for a brief video of the exhibition.
About the ConservatorsThe conservation team is led by:
Paul Haner, paintings conservator for the Saint Louis Art Museum with curatorial oversight by Janeen Turk, senior curatorial assistant at the
Saint Louis Art Museum.
Conservation assistance is provided by:
Mark Bockrath, who assisted the Museum in 2009 with the gallery conservation project Reviving Antiquity: Restoring Hubert Robert’s Views of Ancient Ruins and in 2011 with phase one of Restoring an American Treasure: The Panorama of the Monumental Grandeur of the Mississippi Valley. Bockrath is a painting conservator in private practice in West Chester, Pennsylvania, and will work on Panorama for several weeks during the exhibition schedule.
Nicole Pizzini earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting from Illinois Wesleyan University. She has worked as a conservation assistant for the Field Museum and currently works for Parma Conservation in Chicago, restoring artwork in a variety of materials.
Heather White received a Bachelor of Arts in Art History and Archaeology from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She has worked on archaeological projects in Nebraska and Indiana as well as interned in the Saint Louis Art Museum’s curatorial department.
Jacqueline Keck will be joining the team this summer. She holds a BFA in painting from the University of Missouri - St. Louis.
History of the PanoramaIn the 19th century, panoramas emerged as an enormously popular form of entertainment. Accompanied by music and explanatory narration, moving panoramas were seen as a convenient and inexpensive way to recreate the experience of travel. By the late 19th century, the popularity of moving panoramas had declined, and many fell into disrepair after heavy use and rough transport took their toll.
Around 1850, Montroville W. Dickeson, a Philadelphia-born doctor and archaeologist, commissioned Irish artist John J. Egan to create a moving panorama depicting the Mississippi River Valley. He used the panorama as a visual aid to accompany the lecture series and exhibitions that he developed to educate the American public about the archaeology of their own country.
While the Panorama of the Monumental Grandeur of the Mississippi Valley was once one of at least six panoramas depicting the landscape along the Mississippi River, it is now the only survivor. Serving not only as an example of the once-popular visual medium of the panorama, the Dickeson-commissioned panorama also illuminates 19th-century views about archaeology and the ancient past of North America.