Concordia ship to be set upright this week

ROME — Italian authorities say the operation to set the Concordia cruise ship upright is set for this week, 20 months after the ship capsized near a tiny Tuscan island, killing 32 people.

National Civil Protection agency chief Franco Gabrielli told islanders on Giglio island that crews could try to right the ship as soon as Monday.

He stressed that the exact date for the operation will only be known the day before, since the final OK depends upon weather and sea conditions.

The ship will eventually be towed away and scrapped.

Winged Victory flies off for restoration

PARIS — Winged Victory of Samothrace, the hulking Hellenistic sculpture that dominates the Louvre Museum’s most frequented staircase, is taking flight for a restoration project.

Officials at the famed Paris museum said the 2nd-century B.C. sculpture was set to be dismantled, hoisted onto rollers and wheeled into a closed cabin in another Louvre gallery for structural work and a meticulous cleaning to restore the original hues to its marble over the next nine months.

The 18-foot sculpture shows the headless, armless remains of the winged Greek goddess of victory, Nike, as she lands on a ship’s bow atop a flat base. The work’s flowing garments, energized pose with right leg extended and outstretched wings point to an expert rendering in the high-quality Paros marble, which has yellowed with time, Louvre officials said.

The $5.27 million project, which will take Winged Victory out of visitors’ sight until June, follows three years after another Louvre masterpiece, the Venus de Milo, was touched up.

Associated Press