After the completion of the restoration project which lasted 10 months, the Winged Victory of Samothrace returned to its place in the Louvre museum, on its majestic pedestal, to welcome millions of visitors from around the world.
During the restoration process, conservationists detected some damages caused by various reasons. They found damages from traces left by the casts as well as small damages in the folds made when the statue was dismantled and removed from the Louvre in 1939, protecting it from the invading Nazis. The restoration project confirmed some of the specialists’ theories but also created a series of new questions. They discovered that the statue was fixed in two different places of its base while the edging of the drapery was painted with Egyptian blue.
It was the first time since World War II that the statue was moved and the first time it was restored since it was installed in the museum. The conservationists cleaned the statue using compresses soaked in water in order to clean the dirt and protect the marble. They also replaced a metal rod that had caused cracks in the huge base, which has the form of a ship.
For its restoration, the 5 meters high and 29 tons Greek statue was transferred to an adjacent room in the museum which was closed to the public and became the laboratory of the conservationists. The cost of the scaffold used for the transport of the statue amounted to 3 million euros.