The restoration of the complete set of tapestries will take up to ten years at an estimated cost of one million euros. The Foundation intends to restore all the tapestries two of which were already restored in 1997. The King Baudouin Foundation of Belgium, committed to supporting the restoration of Flemish works of art, sponsored that of the tapestry Charity.
The tapestries were woven according to the designs of Peter Paul Rubens at the Flemish atelier of Judecos de Vos, famous as the court Weaver for King Louis XIV. They were presented to the church in 1701 by the newly appointed Aragonese Grandmaster Ramon Perellos y Roccaful as part of a traditional custom where by the newly appointed Grandmasters bestowed a gift or gioia to the church.
The tapestries are of a truly impressive size with fourteen of them measuring six by six-and-a half metres. They were specifically designed for St John’s Co-Cathedral to cover the nave of the church. The large tapestries depict the life of Christ with allegories portraying the principal and fundamental divine truths of the Catholic faith. The allegories were meant to convey a message-that of the supremacy of the Catholic Church and the fame and grandeur of the Grandmaster and the Knights of the Order of St. John. Another fourteen panels represent the Virgin Mary, Christ the Saviour and the Apostles. A tapestry portraying the donor Grandmaster Perellos y Roccaful completes the impressive collection. This unique priceless collection is the largest in the world.
Currently not on display.