AYVALIK - Anatolia News Agency
Taksiyarhis church will serve as a museum and venue for art and cultural events after the restoration. AA photo
The Taksiyarhis Church on Ayvalık’s Cunda Island, one of the most important ancient buildings of Ayvalık, is being restored by the Rahmi Koç Museum and Culture Foundation.
The church will serve as a museum and venue for art and cultural events.
Governor Nihat Nalbak has said the restoration is very important for the Ayvalık district and will help develop the cultural richness of the area.
About Taksiyarhis Church
Taksiyarhis Church is the largest church on Cunda Island and is treasured for its interior marble design, portraits of Saints and ancient reliefs picturing the life of Jesus Christ.
The main part of the church consists of four marble pillars tied to each other with bows. Its Basilica Dome was built in 1873. In 1927, the church became a mosque and the icons on the walls were erased. Despite the damage, the church still retains some of the mural icons, the most popular of which belong to the Prophet Yunus. Looted by treasure hunters in the past, tools and artifacts from the ancient religious building are currently housed in the Bergama Museum.
The Rahmi Koç Foundation has rented the church for 49 years, though it was closed to visitors after suffering damage during a storm that occurred Sept. 11, 2003. The present restoration work is being managed by architect Ali Erdoğan.