Renowned Byzantine Frescoes in St George's Church Preserved through Collaboration between North Macedonia, Greece, and European Center

Rare Byzantine Art Found in St George's Church in North Macedonia Preserved with Support from Governments and European Center

St George's Church, located high in the mountains above Lake Prespa, has become a significant cultural heritage site with the discovery of unique Byzantine fresco paintings. These exquisite artworks offer a glimpse into the pre-Renaissance period, evident in the expressions and attire of the depicted saints. Recognizing the importance of preserving these treasures, the governments of North Macedonia and Greece, in collaboration with the European Centre for Byzantine Monuments, have entered into an agreement to safeguard and maintain the frescoes.

Protecting and maintaining these ancient masterpieces presents a challenge for restoration teams from both countries. The paints used in the frescoes were derived from minerals, plants, and even animals, mixed with lime and water. The application process involved carefully applying the paint onto fresh mortar before it dried.

The preservation project is a result of the strengthened bilateral relations between North Macedonia and Greece since the signing of the Prespa agreement in 2017. As the waters of Lake Prespa form the border between the two countries, the joint effort to protect the cultural heritage in the surrounding region is a concrete manifestation of this improved collaboration.

Photo: European Centre for Byzantine Monuments Facebook

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