Well, what you have here is a National Treasure.
A couple weeks ago we got the most amazing phone call. It was from Christine Hadsel from the site Curtains without borders
A fellow worker had seen our blog and Chris wanted to inform me about what we actually had here in Foxboro. These are called Grand Drapes and were used in grange hall the beginning of last century. Some were quite ornate as the curtains below front curtains and some were designed to advertise local businesses. All the pictures in this blog come from Curtains Without Borders which is "A conservation project to preserve historic painted scenery."
This is just one of the over 100 stage backdrops found by this group. Many of the artists have been identified including 3 of Louies' that were found in Vermont.
"A grand drape is always located at the front of the stage, right behind the proscenium arch. It usually contains a romantic scene with mountains, a castle or other dramatic view. Occasionally a local scene is used, but only if it is sufficiently dramatic in its own right. If modern “velvet” drapes have been installed, the historic grand drape is usually positioned as far forward as possible, although some become backdrops.
"* *Curtains without Borders
These scenic backdrops took my breath away with their exquisite artwork. It's as though you can reach out and touch the lush velour. These backdrop paintings were popular from approx 1910 to 1940. and then either put away to deteriorate or thrown away. A few were rolled as was Louis Galanis awaiting a ressurection. Conservation methods are described in further detail.
Louis' stage theatrical backdrop was called an advertising backdrop. It was dual purpose backdrop, While serving to provide a delightful scene on the stage it would also advertise the local business that supported the grange hall
An example of another advertising backdrop.
As well as Louies' from Scenic Arts Studios. We
had been informed by the Foxboro people that
there originally had been side curtains but they
And now the WOW, these backdrops have been declared a NATIONAL TREASURE by the National Endowmnet for the Arts. The work of Louis Galanis the founder of Scenic Arts Studios and Christos Galanis will truly live forever! Chris Hadsel the director of Curtains Without Borders
is meeting with Scenic Arts Studios in June to view the curtain and its install. Will keep you posted.
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