Bring King Henry back to life in Charleville Castle

 

We would like to share with you a fascinating project we are working on — we are reproducing a huge 18th Century Masterpiece which hung for Centuries in Charleville Castle Ireland. The painting, entitled “King Henry the 8th at the baptism of the later Queen Elizabeth the 1st” is a historic and noteworthy piece depicting a scene which foretells the dramatic events which brought hitherto unimaginable change to Ireland and set in motion a growing Irish Diaspora which spans the Globe We are all working together to complete this project over the coming months Our story begins when in 1970, Canadian, Graham Gordon climbed through the window of a derelict castle in Ireland, this Castle. The floors were strewn with debris, rotting furniture and broken glass — a seat of power now long forgotten and lost in a deep primordial oak wood in the middle of Ireland. Light was streaming in through a broken shutter, casting rays across a giant room of intricate ornate design. There towering over Gordon hung a giant 10 foot by 20 foot grimy gilt frame encasing a gutted dark leather-like material. Gordon having felt sympathy for the falling heap of a castle instantly became determined to save this giant painting. The owner gladly sold the painting to Gordon and the painting was carted off on the back of the tractor never to be seen again. Or so we thought? Many years passed and eventually, people came to find the castle and see how they could do something to stop the demise of this almost forgotten treasure. Battling against incredible odds, through decades of rotating volunteers, they took possession of this great building, each year saving more of it and opening it up to be shared with the community both local and international. The faces change but the ethos of this great place remains — a story hard to tell — how does one explain it all? There has always been the story of the missing painting — and sketch of it on the wall was discovered many years back — we searched and searched … In January of this year it suddenly reappeared fully restored at the Beaverbrook Museum in Canada. This is when we became determined to return an exact reproduction of this great painting to Charleville castle In Phase 1 we got permission from the owner. Phase two was the most challenging and we decided that if we could succeed with this phase we could seek funding to complete the return of King Henry to Charleville Castle. We were lucky when we found Arthur. Arthur had honed his skills in Poland before taking on this project to prove his high capability. Since then the reproduction has been completed and the canvas is rolled away – awaiting funding to complete the last phase — this involves the stretching of the canvas 20 foot by 10 foot in the great Dining Room of the castle and it’s mounting in a gilt frame on the wall where it had hung before for many , many years. This project which once seemed impossible to achieve is now within our reach. Soon with your help it will be open to the public. What a powerful statement — that such a masterpiece could be so visibly returned to its rightful place by pure voluntary effort — this is our story and we need you to come on board to help us complete it.

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