Wall Paintings and Mosaics


Fragments of wall paintings from the first quarter of the 12th century have been preserved in the belfry of St. Mary’s Church in Zadar. An exceptional monument of Romanesque art, they were discovered during conservation work which ensued after the church had suffered damage in the World War II.


The conservation of illusionistic wall paintings by John the Baptist Ranger in the trefoil sanctuary of the Baroque Pauline Church of St. Jerome in Štrigova has been underway since 2000. After the condition of the walls was documented and preventive protection measures were taken, the walls were drained and the restoration of Ranger's paintings on the vault, the apses and the triumphal arch was launched.


16th-century wall paintings in the sanctuary of St. Matthew’s Church in Slum depicting Old Testament prophets and church dignitaries, allegories and the Life of Christ were hidden underneath an overpaint. Due to long-lasting humidity exposure and static movements they had been covered in smudges and tiny cracks. It took several years of conservation and restoration treatments to eliminate the influx of humidity into the building. Measures were taken to prevent further degradation of the plaster and paint layers, which were ultimately reintegrated, thus giving legibility to the original composition.

Wall Paintings in St. Helen's Church in Oprtalj


The Romanesque Chapel of St. Helen near Oprtalj is one among many Istrian churches with valuable wall paintings dating from the Late Middle Age period. The wall paintings in the apse and on the triumphal arch are a work of master Cleriginus II from Koper, painted in the first half of the 15th century. Conservators found the wall paintings heavily damaged – wide and deep cracks cut through the wall paintings in the apse in several places. Among a large number of lacunae of the damaged plaster layers some even revealed the stone structure. In some areas the wall paintings were subsequently overpainted using a coating which had firmly bound to the background. Complex conservation and restoration procedures ensued, aiming to consolidate the building, remove the subsequent plaster and paint off the inner walls and protect, consolidate and reintegrate the original layers.


In the course of the 2006 construction works in a first-floor room of the northern wing of the Pauline monastery in Lepoglava, while removing a partition wall, a fragment of a wall painting was discovered. Executed in lime painting technique, it measures 380×35/40 cm. The fragment is only preserved in the length and width of the partition wall, but was once part of a larger painted medallion on the room's vaulting, as indicated by the remains of stucco mouldings on its edges. Multiple lime-wash coatings were found on top of the paint layer, which points to fact that it had been hidden even before the partition wall was erected.


The vaulting of the Baroque Church of St. Florian in Varaždin is decorated with six medallions painted in the fresco secco technique. Before the systematic conservation and restoration works were launched in 2008, the vaulting had been covered in a paint layer of decorative motifs, probably dating from the 19th century, and in two older lime coatings. After the overpaint had been removed, painted scenes with Baroque style characteristics were uncovered. Based on the way the drawing was built and the morphology of the figures, the paintings were attributed to Blaž Gruber.

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