University of Wroclaw Oratorium Marianum Hall

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Pl. Uniwersytecki 1 50-13, Wroclaw, Poland

University of Wroclaw Oratorium Marianum Hall Reviews

cotton_foam cotton_f…
262 reviews
spend hours here, but won't get tired... Sep 27, 2015
The Oratorium Marianum had me head over heels! Out of the many things we did or saw in Wroclaw, the frescoes at the Oratorium Marianum and the Aula Leopoldina delighted me the most. Originally painted by a Czechoslovakian Baroque painter in the early 18th century Johann Christoph Handke; this room will leave anyone in great awe! Anybody who is enthusiastic about art could spend hours staring at these fine arts and will never get tired.

The Oratorium Marianum was once a place of prayer and a music hall decorated with beautiful ornaments, paintings, and vibrant frescoes. However, one of the brutal results of wars, (World War II) is the devastation of exquisite architectures and buildings. Sadly, The Oratorium Marianum at Wroclaw University shared that fate. Except for a very few walls and plasters left, everything in that beautiful room was all destroyed.

Thanks to the various organizations as well as to the teams of artists who rallied in rebuilding and renovating this iconic structure in the University of Wroclaw. Although, it took years to replace the broken plaster decorations, sculptures, paintings, columns, vaults, and marbles; the original appearance transpired slowly.

Meanwhile, the ceiling that was the only part of the hall left blank for years had to be restored as well. Funding for this project came in slow, but once a generous amount was collected, the work to restore Handke’s paintings on the ceiling began. A painter by the name of Christoph (yes another Christoph) Wetzel came as the person to restore Handke’s frescoes. Convincing Mr. Wetzel to do the project was not easy; not because he is proud, but because he is a portrait painter and not an art painter. There is a video shown in one corner of the hall how Wetzel worked at that time. He was meticulous, and he had to lie down on a bed mounted on a scaffolding beneath the lobby’s ceiling! When he had to assess the result, he would go down to the floor ground. In the meantime, the talented restorer finished the work of the entire ceiling within a year. Of course, the 66-year-old Dresden-based artist had to check documentation, including colored slides to achieve as close as Handke’s original frescoes.

Furthermore, Wetzel reinvents the work by inserting his self-portrait found in the largest plafond that represents the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Wroclaw professors did not mind Wetzel’s invention. In fact, they were delighted with the final result. Today, these restored halls are back to their original uses as venues for classical music concerts.

The Oratorium Marianum is open to public viewing with a minimal fee of PLN 8.00 (US$4.00), and this includes a visit to Aula Leopoldina; another exquisite baroque-style decorated hall located on the second floor. The sites are open from Friday to Sunday, between 10:00 to 17:00 hours.

As I mentioned, these halls have the most gorgeous, ornate, impressive interior decorations and paintings. Hence; having the right as one of the must-place to visit in Wroclaw!
5 / 5 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
Vikram says:
Sounds reasonably priced for what it has to offer
Posted on: Sep 28, 2015
cotton_foam says:
:D Oh that's true, Bill!!
Posted on: Sep 28, 2015
Zagnut66 says:
Fantastic restoration work. I would probably get a neck cramp looking at the ceiling frescoes.
Posted on: Sep 28, 2015
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