Friday, December 3, 2010

Kryvka, Ukraine (Now in Lviv Skansen)

This wonderful wooden church, dedicated to Saint Nicholas, is originally from the small village of Kryvka, found near the border with Poland. In 1930 it was moved to the Lviv Museum of Folk Architecture to become the first structure in the museum's collection.
Today it is the museum's star attraction, preserved as a superb example of the Boyko style of Rusyn wooden church design. Boyko churches are identifiable by a building plan with three steeples where the tallest steeple is the central one; the interior contains three rooms, with the middle one being the largest.
The Kryvka church was originally constructed in 1763, and suffered major damage in World War I when a shell crashed through the roof. I spoke with the priest responsible for the church and he told me that a lack of funding for restoration of western Ukraine's wooden churches threatens the long-term sustainability of many of these unique and remarkable structures. The Lviv skansen is found at the edge of the city, and is easily reached by tram from the centre.

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