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更新时间:2018-5-2 20:10:52 来源:千亿千亿国际娱乐官网 作者:佚名

The art hidden from Nazi bombs

“Hide them in caves and cellars, but not one picture shall leave this island.” So declared Winston Churchill in 1940, determined that the National Gallery’s collection should be saved from Nazi attacks – but also that the masterpieces should remain on home turf.

丘吉尔(Winston Churchill)1940年宣布,“把艺术品藏进洞穴和酒窖,不要让任何一幅名画离开英伦三岛。”他决定拯救国家美术馆的藏品以免遭受纳粹空袭而毁灭。他还指示,这些国宝一定要留在自己的国土上。

Or should that be under it? For the National Gallery did in fact keep its paintings safe by storing them underground, in an old slate mine in Manod, North Wales.


Keeping masterpieces in a mine doesn’t sound like a great plan – but the paintings were actually “very happy down there,” says Minna Moore-Ede, a curator of the recent National Gallery exhibition titled Manod: The Nation’s Treasure Caves, about this unique period of the museum’s history. The small show featured archive imagery of the paintings being relocated to the mine, near Blaenau Ffestiniog in Snowdonia, as well as photographs of it today taken by Robin Friend.

把艺术品保存在矿山中听上去不是一个伟大的计划,但实际上,这些艺术品“非常高兴在那里待着”,埃德(Minna Moore-Ede)在谈到国家美术馆经历的那个特殊时期时说。他是国家美术馆最近一个展览“马诺德:国家珍宝洞穴”(Manod:The Nation's Treasure Caves)的策展人。这个小型展览展示了当年疏散到斯诺登尼亚的布莱奈费斯蒂尼奥格(Blaenau Ffestiniog)附近矿坑中的美术作品的有关档案,以及弗兰德(Robin Friend)拍摄的当今马诺德。

During World War Two, much of the art was destroyed in fighting or looted, never to be seen again. And although a lot was also saved thanks to the heroic efforts of individuals and institutions, some of the stories of art in wartime do make you wince for the poor works.


In London, the Elgin Marbles were hidden in Aldwych tube station – although, alarmingly, it was later revealed it wouldn’t have withstood a direct hit. In Paris, the Louvre was emptied out in 1939, with 3,600 paintings packed off to safe houses. The Mona Lisa – now considered too fragile to be moved – was shuttled round the country five times, moving from chateau to abbey to chateau, to keep her one step ahead of the Nazis.

在伦敦,埃尔金大理石雕塑(Elgin Marbles)被藏在奥德维奇(Aldwych)地铁站里,令人惊叹的是,后来发现这组古希腊石雕根本经受不起纳粹任何一次直接的空袭。巴黎的卢浮宫1939年被清空,所有3600幅名画被包装后送往安全的地方保存。《蒙娜丽莎》这幅价值连城的名画,现在大家觉得太珍贵不能移动,但在二战时为抢在纳粹来到之前,曾从城堡送到修道院,又从修道院再到城堡,反反复复,在全法各地来回穿行过五次之多。

In Britain, the National Gallery wasn’t the only institution to relocate to Wales: the British Museum sent the Magna Carta, works by Michelangelo, Raphael and Leonardo da Vinci, and rare books including Shakespeare and Milton to the National Library of Wales in Aberystwyth. Even this wasn’t deemed safe enough however, and during the war they dug an underground cave, with a special heating system, in which to store the works.

在英国,国家美术馆并不是唯一疏散到威尔士的机构:大英博物馆将“大宪章” (Magna Carta),米开朗基罗(Michelangelo)、拉斐尔(Raphael)和达芬奇(Leonardo da Vinci)的作品,以及包括莎士比亚(Shakespeare)和弥尔顿(Milton)在内的珍品书,也送往阿伯里斯特威斯(Aberystwyth)的威尔士国家图书馆(National Library of Wales)。但即使这样也不够安全,在战争期间,他们挖了一个地下洞穴,并配有专门的供暖系统以存放这些国宝。

The Axis’s attic


But the determination to squirrel art away for after the war was just as strong among the Nazis. Hitler had grand plans to turn his childhood hometown of Linz into a super museum containing all the world’s greatest art. Nazi theft, in order to fulfil this hideously overblown ambition, was therefore huge and systematic. But the works had to go somewhere during the fighting – and many went into a salt mine in Altaussee, Austria.


Over 6,500 paintings were stored there, including works by Michelangelo, Rubens, Vermeer and Rembrandt, as well as the Ghent Altarpiece. That they ever made it out is almost miraculous: instructions had been given for the whole lot to be blown up in the event of German surrender. It is believed the plan was thwarted by local miners and a Nazi official, who swapped vast bombs waiting to send the whole collection sky-high for smaller ones that, when detonated, only brought down enough rubble to block the entrance. The work remained safe, underground, until the Monuments Men – an Allied taskforce charged with finding and saving Europe’s art – got to them after the war ended.

这个盐矿储藏了6500多幅名画,有米开朗基罗、鲁本斯(Rubens)、维米尔(Vermeer)和伦勃朗(Rembrandt)的作品,还有根特祭坛画(Ghent Altarpiece)。最后这些人类瑰宝能重见天日可说是一个奇迹:纳粹已经给了指示,一旦德国投降,要把整个地段炸毁。据知,计划被当地矿工和一名纳粹官员破坏掉,他们把准备用来炸毁这批艺术品的大型炸弹,换成了小炸弹,结果引爆后,只砸毁了坑道入口。这些艺术品仍安全存放在地下,直到战争结束后,这个受命去寻找并拯救欧洲艺术品的盟军特遣队——盟军夺宝队(Monuments Men)的到来,这批艺术品才被盐矿里找了回来。

Still, for all that sticking grand masters in a salt mine might sound sacrilegious, at least it was dark and cool – not actually the worst conditions for the paintings. And one of the things that is fascinating about the history of Manod is that the relocation of 1,800 paintings to Wales ultimately ushered in a significant new era of conservation for the institution.


Explosives were used to enlarge the entrance of the mine, so the biggest works could fit in, and a railway system inside the caves was developed to move the paintings around. Six brick store houses were built inside the cavernous space, allowing them to control temperature and humidity.


This labyrinthine, subterranean world became thronged with art, but also life: many local men were employed to help look after the paintings. “They were sleeping down there. For four years, that was their job, and it would have been bustling with people,” says Moore-Ede.


The National Gallery’s chief curator at the time, Martin Davies, moved into a nearby cottage – and apparently thrived in the remote spot. The gallery’s exile offered him a chance to spend time in close proximity to the collection, and he took full advantage of it, completing major new catalogues of the permanent collection. “He did a lot of research, because [the paintings] were so accessible,” explains Moore-Ede. “He was a shy, quiet man who really relished the opportunity to have no public around!”

国家美术馆当时的主馆戴维斯(Martin Davies)搬进了附近的一间小屋,显然在那个偏僻的地方他一定很忙碌。美术馆被疏散在那里使他有机会接近藏品,他充分利用这个机会,为永久藏品制作了新的主目录。埃德解释说,“他做了很多研究,因为可以随时接近“这些名画”。 他是一个很害羞、安静的人,真的很珍惜和名画独处的机会!”

Museum matériel


This was also a crucial period for the gallery’s developing understanding of how best to store paintings. In the 1940s, the National Gallery actually didn’t have any kind of air-conditioning system. Having to move to Manod meant a lot of thinking and research about how best to house the collection, and a team was able to closely monitor the paintings in controlled conditions.


“There was a small studio built outside the quarry where they did a lot of conservation work, it was actually a very formative time for the gallery,” says Moore-Ede. After the war, major renovations were needed anyway following bomb damage to the gallery, and so air conditioning was added, and a new scientific department established.


Manod nearly never happened, however: the initial proposal had been to ship everything to Canada. Kenneth Clark, the gallery’s director, was nervous about the possibility of U-boat attacks, and the notion was scotched altogether when he spoke to Churchill about it. Possibly, the prime minister had one eye on the patriotic potential of British art in wartime.

差一点就不会有马诺德秘密收藏工程,因为最初的建议是将所有艺术品转移到加拿大。国家美术馆的主任克拉克(Kenneth Clark)担心海运到加拿大途中可能遭遇德国U型潜艇袭击,因此他和丘吉尔讨论国家美术馆的疏散时,转移加拿大的建议就完全被放弃了。也许,丘吉尔首相也考虑到二战时英国艺术对激发国人爱国热情的潜力。

Manod was obviously kept secret; somewhat alarmingly, the mine was maintained as a clandestine evacuation site, in case of nuclear war, until 1983. But Churchill’s hunch, that somehow it was important to keep the collection on home turf, also proved quite correct. In the last couple years of the war, the National Gallery took to exhibiting a single ‘Picture of the Month’ in London, brought out of storage in Manod.

有些不可思议的是,马诺德显然在战后还一直保密;直到1983年,这个矿场仍然是一个秘密的疏散点,用来预防核战。丘吉尔当年认为将英国的国宝保存在祖国的土地上是很重要事,事后证实他这个直觉非常正确。在二战的最后两年,国家美术馆在伦敦定期举办“每月一名画”(Picture of the Month)画展,这些名画都是从马诺德石矿的收藏中取出来的。

The aim was to buck up beleaguered British spirits, and it became a sensation – up to 30,000 visitors a month flocked to get a glimpse of just one painting, with popular choices including Velázquez’s The Rokeby Venus and Titian’s Noli me Tangere. “Kenneth Clarke chose what came back very carefully, they wanted pictures that had deep emotions – he was aware the public was in need of sustenance,” suggests Moore-Ede.

这样做的目的是为了鼓舞陷入战争困境的英国人的士气。展览轰动一时——每月有3万多观众蜂拥而至,只为目睹一幅名画的真容,其中包括委拉斯开兹(Velázquez)的《镜前的维纳斯》(The Rokeby Venus)和提香(Titian)的《耶稣玛利亚相会图》(Noli me Tangere)。埃德说:“克拉克非常仔细地挑选要带回来的名画,观众想看那些蕴含深刻情绪的画,他知道公众需要精神食粮。”

While the photographs of Manod today reveal only the ghost of the gallery in the caves – the odd empty frame or piece of railway track – in London, the National Gallery was “forever changed by what went on during the war,” according to Moore-Ede. Even in showing only one painting a month, this national institution connected more widely and powerfully with its public than ever before: as the saying goes, you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone. Well, until it’s temporarily hidden in a Welsh slate mine, at any rate.