In the heart of the Bucovina region, a remarkable land, with old villages inhabited by Romanians who look like they’ve stepped out of a history book, stands one of Romania’s best-known monasteries. Moldovita Monastery, included in the UNESCO heritage in 1993 as one of the Painted churches of Moldavia, was built between 1532 and 1537. The nuns living here help the visitors understand the significance of the place. They are talking expertly about the history of the monastery and about the frescoes that continue to delight the eye and the heart with their vivid colors, which have remained the same five centuries after they were painted. For hundreds of years, the murals were the only way uneducated country dwellers could learn about the teachings of the Bible. The frescoes are an immense color illustration of Biblical scenes, adapted to the history of the place and to the important moments in the life of the community.
Moldovita Monastery – Medieval art at its purest
Often called ’A Parchment in Red’, the exterior frescos imply colors which are mainly yellow ochre combined with amazing hues of red, blue and green. Along with the ones at Voronet, Moldovita Monastery’s frescoes, have best preserved their colors which are astonishingly fresh and vivid. The green, which represents the earth line, and the blue of the background associates the structure to the grass of the lawn around it and to the sky against which it projects, making the viewer think the church emerged from the lifeblood of the earth, reflecting the surrounding nature.
But looking beyond the colors, what amazes the most is the Crucifixion (nave) which is considered the most valuable painting reflecting this theme in Bucovina churches. As a result, it is often compared with international valuable art such as Italian art (the Descent from the Cross) or with the 15th-century icon painters of Novgorod (the Mourning Of Christ – north wall). In all the paintings, scenes and figures are carefully distributed, showing the harmonious proportions of the church.
From dawn till dusk.
Adults: 5 lei
Filming fee (outside only): 10 lei
Filming is not permitted inside the Church.