LS Lowry work saved from tomato ketchup stains to go on first public display in Salford

By Culture24 Reporter | 29 August 2014

A previously unseen oil painting by LS Lowry, feared by its owners to have been soiled by two “very old” tomato ketchup stains during years in a family home, will go on public display for the first time after conservators at The Lowry in Salford removed the suspected condiment marks

A photo of a painting in yellow and black showing a ship at sea
LS Lowry's The Thames at Greenwich (1959), shown midway through the cleaning process© Elizabeth Jowett
Accompanied by a drawing from two years beforehand, the well-loved 1959 painting, showing The Thames at Greenwich but carrying a "light layer of surface dirt", was tended to by expert Elizabeth Jowett.

The landscape is part of a much larger work, View of Deptford Power Station from Greenwich (1959), which is currently in the National Maritime Museum’s collection in London.

“Lowry was a regular visitor to London, but his views of the city are relatively rare,” reflects Claire Stewart, the Curator of The Lowry Collection, where the canvas which will go on show until December.

“The best known are his paintings of Piccadilly Circus, which are busy with cars and pedestrians.

“His fascination with waterways, however, meant he was obviously drawn to the Thames – and these works are a great example of that.

“It’s very exciting to be able to display pictures which will be completely unknown to our visitors.”

The family has loaned the pair to the venue, which holds the world’s largest collection of works by the artist.

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