Kariye Camii

The Byzantine Institute worked on the restoration and conservation of the mosaics in Kariye Camii in Istanbul, Turkey, starting in 1947. Under the direction of Thomas Whittemore until 1950 and Paul Underwood from 1950 to 1959, the Byzantine Institute cleaned some of the finest examples of mosaics and frescoes in Byzantine art, which were located in the naos, esonarthex and exonarthex, as well as in the parekklesion, at Kariye Camii.

This film generally documents the cleaning, restoration, and conservation of the mosaics in the exonarthex. It also illustrates Thomas Whittemore and the Byzantine Institute staff in action.

Film Sequence

    In black-and-white:
    • General view of the building from the west
        In color:
          • Scenes of Joseph Dreaming, the Virgin and Two Companions, and the Journey to Bethlehem
          • Scene of Enrollment for Taxation
          • Southeastern pendentive of the domical vault of the first bay and the adjoining arch
          • Medallions with saints in the western arch adjoining the domical vault
          • Third bay with a fragment of the Miracle at Cana in the northwestern pendentive
          • Thomas Whittemore and staff working on the domical vault of the same bay and the Pantokrator mosaic
          • Mosaic of the Virgin Blachernitissa with Angels
          • Vault in the second bay with scenes of John the Baptist Bearing Witness to Christ
          • Saint George
          • Christ Pantokrator
          • Scenes of the Nativity, as well as Joseph Dreaming and the Return of the Holy Family from Egypt
          • Saint Tarachus and Saint Andronicus
          • Scene of Christ Taken to Jerusalem for Passover

          ICFA holds two copies of the same film and one of them is available in full length through Vimeo.

          Kariye Camii: Restoration of the Mosaics in the Exonarthex

          Running time: 12:02 minutes

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