Stolen painting back on the wall

Mucha's restored painting returns to the walls of the renovated five-star Thermia Hotel in December.
photo: TASR

ALPHONSE Mucha's oil painting Be Greeted the Blessed Spring of Health, which was stolen from the Thermia Hotel in the Slovak spa town of Piešťany in 2000 and found four years later, will return just in time for the hotel's December reopening as the country's first five-star spa hotel.

The painting is currently undergoing restoration in the studio of Ján Hromada, the TASR news wire reported. Paint came off in several places after the thieves cut it from its frame and rolled it up. Interpol helped in the search for the precious art nouveau work, which Mucha specifically painted in 1932 to fit the pentagon tympanum at the luxurious hotel's dining room.

Restorers have been working on renewing the Thermia's interior design since February. Austrian interior designer Gina Zarski is currently preparing a model of the hotel's room and, according to SITA, is planning to evoke the atmosphere of the hotel's century-old origin.

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