No Feeling Blue Here

It’s a short walk this week, but the destination is special, I promise you.

We are in Bratislava and we’ll start this stroll from the river, at the Slovenské Národné Múzeum.  The building was designed by architect M. M. Harminec and construction began in July 1925, completing in 1928 and opening in May 1930.

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Take time to admire the statue of Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, first president of Czechoslovakia, following the Pittsburgh Agreement of 1918.

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Now we’ll head to the left of the museum, walking east along Vajanského nábrežie and turn left onto Šafárikovo námestie.  At the end of the street, turn right and immediately left onto  Alžbetínska and keep walking until you get to Gajova.

Don’t look to your right just yet – I have something I want to show you straight ahead.

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This is Gamča, a public coeducational school founded in 1626 by the Cardinal Petrus Pazmanus as Collegium Posoniense. The current building was designed by Ödön Lechner, the “father of Hungarian Art Nouveau” and built in 1906-08.  It was completely renovated in 2008-10.  I’m a big art nouveau fan and this such a lovely example – simple, yet beautifully curvy.

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Our real destination, though, is a true confection of a building, standing just across the road.  It was designed by the same architect as the school and initially served as the school’s chapel.

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This is the Church of St Elizabeth, more commonly known as the Blue Church (Modrý Kostolík) – no prizes for guessing why!

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The church celebrates the  life of Saint Elizabeth and was commissioned in 1907 in response to the 700th anniversary of her birth.

The curves and motifs are beautiful examples of Art Nouveau, the art style that embraced all forms of art and design in the period 1890-1910.  This new style was a reaction to the academic art of the 19th century and was inspired by natural forms and structures.  Whilst English speakers adopted the French name, other languages used different terms, such as Jugendstil in German and Secesia in Slovak).

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The roses that feature in the church design reflect the secessionist style and also the legend of St Elizabeth.

St Elizabeth legend -
– from “Bratislava” by Lucy Mallows, Bradt, 2005

The ground floor of the church is oval with a 36.8 metre high cylindrical church tower.

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The inside is just as beautiful as the exterior, with yet more blue

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and a painting above the altar of St Elizabeth handing out alms to the poor.

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Linked to Jo’s Monday WalksBlue Monday, Good Fences and Monday Escapes
aDSC_0636_ppCopyright Debbie Smyth, 24 August 2015

31 thoughts on “No Feeling Blue Here

  1. I’m a big art nouveau fan also and love these photos. The OH has been to Bratislava several times (he works for a company that has its HQ there) and has photos of the outside of this church. Not sure he has been inside. If he goes again I shall have to go with him!

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  2. What a neat walk you took. – Those buildings are both amazing. – I really liked the unusual but cool looking fencing in front of that school. – The Blue Church was stunning. So many wonderful details.

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  3. wow! those colors! 🙂

    i fixed your link-in to good fences. you had it linked up to the photo of the green gate but not to your blog post here so folks probably couldn’t figure out how to comment. thanks for joining!

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  4. What an extraordinary building, Debs! Like a wedding cake 🙂 I love Art Nouveau and this is a real treat. Two buildings for the price of one 🙂 I hope you’ve got your feet up? You’re only allowed to join me from the comfort of your easy chair.

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      1. Hi Jo, I was considering taking you on a similar walk with a visit to thid Blue church, but I wasn’t happy with my photos. Now I’m.relieved that Debbie did it so impeccably.

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  5. Hi Debbie, I must say your photos of “Blue church” are great. It’s no use shooting it from the street like I did with all the cars in front and with an ultra-wide angle it looks too funny, but you my dear did great 🙂

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      1. My day in Bratislava was grey too. Btw, Masaryk has streets named after him in several towns in Croatia (he is the foreigner with most streets named after him in my country) 🙂

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