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This Restoration Didn't Go Well

Before-and-after photos are a sight to behold
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 15, 2020 2:30 PM CST

(Newser) – Whoever did this must be lying low about now. A sculpture of a smiling woman in Spain looks more like a cartoon character after an unidentified art restorer got to work on her, CBS News reports. A local artist in Palencia, Spain, posted before-and-after images of the statue, which adorns an office building's ornate facade, and asked what on Earth happened. "I was surprised. How could they have done this?" Antonio Capel asked the AP this week. "This must be at least 10 years old, and we're only finding out now." One Twitter user described the statue as "the potato head of Palencia," while another said "I lost my appetite after I saw this fugly humanoid."

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The botched job instantly recalled another failed Spanish restoration: Back in 2012, a decaying fresco of Jesus Christ looked a lot different after an amateur art restorer gave it a makeover. Some said the restoration by Cecilia Jimenez made Jesus look like a monkey, while the painter's granddaughter said Jimenez "has destroyed this painting." But Jiminez, who was in her 80s, insisted the job was fully authorized: "The priest knew! He did!" she said. "How could we do something like that without permission?" Another Spanish restoration two years ago left wooden statues of Jesus and Mary covered in bright pink and green, the BBC reported at the time. (Read more art restoration stories.)

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