Six Further Magnificent Paintings installed in Rathmines Church

Timeline date: 2022

Six paintings by a prominent 19th century Italian painter Francesco Gagliardi were installed in the Church of Mary Immaculate Refuge of Sinners Rathmines in 2022. Originally commissioned for the Dublin Archdiocesan Seminary by Dr Michael Verdon, President of Holy Cross College Clonliffe in July 1874, six surviving paintings of the original set of eight were transferred to Rathmines upon the closure of Conliffe College.

The subject matter of the six paintings relates to the Holy Cross, to pre-figurations of it in the Old Testament, and to the legend of its finding by St. Helena and its subsequent history. The subjects of the six paintings are:

  • The Sacrifice of Noah
  • The Crossing of the Red Sea
  • Abraham preparing to sacrifice Isaac
  • The Finding of the Cross by the Empress Helena
  • The Apparition of the Cross to Constantine
  • The Serpent of Bronze

All the paintings are in oil on canvas and measure 11ft in height and 9ft in width. Restoration works were carried out on each painting by art conservationists in Trinity College Dublin before their transferral to Rathmines Church where engineers constructed secure wall fittings. This photograph exhibition details the journey of Gagliardi’s magnificent paintings from Clonliffe College to Rathmines Parish.