Search form



Subscribe to our newsletter

Treat yourself with a well-read and learn about our cultural heritage!
We prepare content of the protection, legislation, exhibitions, publications, and domestic and international projects.

Ljubljana, Church of St. Mary’s Assumption

The restoration of the 600 square metres of ceiling paintings by the painter and fresco artist Matej Sternen in the Church of St. Mary’s Assumption in Ljubljana was completed at the end of the summer 2015. It had been ordered by the paters of the Franciscan monastery in Ljubljana.

Considering its immense size, the fact that Matej Sternen took only a few months to complete the paintings in the presbytery is all the more surprising. Following preliminary preparations, he began painting in the spring of 1935, starting on the vaulted nave a year later. He finished on 15th August the same year. The reason behind such a sudden an effective project was the painter’s unbelievable dedication to his work as well as his exceptional technical skills. 

The extensive renovation of wall paintings, also the renovation of Sternen’s murals in the presbytery, do not consist solely of conservation and restoration work that is determined at the start of the project on the basis of preliminary surveys, but is also a developmentally-oriented programme that spills over into other areas and touches all projects that face similar issues. The natural sciences studies of the materials were the basis for the methodology of this work. The damage incurred at the point of contact between both bell towers and the presbytery were fixed in the restoration. All the effects of the water damage, which had already spread across the entire arch between the bell towers, were removed and special attention was focused on the removal of sooty and dusty films and moulds that could be found throughout the painting.

The finished work unveiled Sternen’s masterful strokes with which he proved that, despite the impressionist style, he was able to create an exceptional and monumental piece of art.



Legal/Cookies/  Production: ENKI