13 November 2008

neo-classical bigness

Carmelite Church / Warsaw, Poland
The Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary and of St. Joseph commonly known as the Carmelite Church is a beautiful neo-classical style Roman Catholic church built 1761-1783. The present church is the second building to have been situated on this prominent site in Old Town, erected over the site of a wooden church originally constructed for the Discalced Carmelite order in 1643 and burned down by the Swedes and Brandenburg Germans in the 1650s. This impressive facade was built in a style typical for the reign of King Stanisław August Poniatowski, with dominant columns supporting the cornice. The interior is typical of the opulence associated with the Rococo style and has a magnificent main altar, abundant gilding and amazing stucco ceiling decorations. And fortunately, during World War II the church was saved from deliberate destruction by the retreating German forces and was only slightly damaged. I love church architecture - especially of this style - big, beautiful and fun.

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