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Moses to get public makeover

ROME, Italy (CNN) -- One of the world's most famous statues is to be restored -- with the work broadcast across the Internet 24 hours a day.

Michelangelo's Moses, hailed as the most extraordinary statue of its time, is being restored as part of a multimedia event using Web cams, TV shows and music.

Alberto Abbruzzese, the artistic director of the project said: "With this project we celebrate not only the survival of the statue of Moses but also a new life for cultural wealth in general."

The restoration project aims to reduce staining on the marble statue that was caused by chemicals used to make replica statues.

The statue has been housed at the Church of San Pietro in Vincoli since it was completed in 1516.

Abbruzzese said: "We entrust this project will give us back the artwork as it was meant to be in the mind and in the desire of the artist.

"Also, through the media we have today, the artwork (will be) present in the public's imagination."

The statue depicts Moses descending from Mount Sinai with the tablets of the law in his hands.

The two metre (7 feet) tall Moses stands as the centrepiece of the tableau for the unfinished tomb of Julius II.

Lottomatica, the company jointly funding the restoration with the Italian Ministry of Culture, is setting up a Web cam at the church to show the restoration in process.

The multimedia restoration project will also include a series of photographs by German photographer Helmut Newton and a concert by British composer Michael Nyman.

But Antonio Forcellino, restorer of the statue, warned: "It will never be as it was when Michelangelo made it.

"To take out the stains from marble is too risky an operation so we'll limit ourselves to lower the tone of the stains themselves."

'Moses' gets online audience
November 22, 2000
Rare Michelangelo found at stately home
October 10, 2000

Church of San Pietro, L'Aquila
Michaelangelo's Moses

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4:30pm ET, 4/16

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