The Art Institute of Chicago‘s famous bronzed lions were spotted on the highway yesterday as they were being carted off for cleaning. The Art Institute announced its plan earlier in the week
The lion statues are to receive full grooming, including a steam cleaning and a fresh layer of wax coating along with a full maintenance check for corrosion and other damage during the cleaning process. One Twitter user witnessed the process, including a series of pictures showing the lions being removed.
The Art Institute’s lions, made in 1893 by Edward Kemeys, are being deinstalled this morning for conservation treatment. pic.twitter.com/J5VCk30aNd
— Ashlee Rezin (@Ashlee_Rezin) June 14, 2022
The sculptures, which were made in 1893 by Edward Kemeys, are expected to return at the end of July, once their maintenance process has been completed.
As they have become a key part of the museum itself, the art institute is providing them with expert care in order to preserve them for generations to come. The gorgeous bronze statues have taken part in cultural moments over the years, dressing up in jerseys and donning face masks for COVID 19.
As the lions were last cleaned in 2001, it’s definitely time for a bath.
[Featured photo via Shutterstock]