Partners: Balkan Heritage Foundation and the Municipality of Plovdiv

Period of the project: October 4- 24, 2021

Funded by: Balkan Heritage Foundation and the Municipality of Plovdiv

Mosaic Week in Plovdiv is a pilot project of the Balkan Heritage Foundation, which aims to promote mosaics and draw public attention to their preservation, future and impact as art and media. Through the creation of a mosaic tour, two different segments of the city’s mosaic heritage will be presented – the ancient floor mosaics of Philippopolis (3rd – 4th century AD), whose number increased significantly after the discovery and the conservation of the mosaic floors of the Episcopal Basilica (2015-2020), and the contemporary wall mosaics of Plovdiv, executed in the 1970s and 1980s, found mainly on the facades of public buildings.

The newly created mosaic tour will be presented on a website offering basic textual and visual information about the mosaics, an online map and directions to each of the 12 mosaic sites. The sites are as follows:

  1. The Small Basilica (visitor center): a mosaic floor from the first half of the 5th century and a mosaic floor of a baptistery from the 6th century
  2. The Episcopal (Bishop’s) Basilica of Philippopolis (visitor center): mosaic floors, built in stages between the middle of the 4th and the beginning of the 6th century
  3. Central Post Office Building (interior): mosaic “Postal pigeons” by Georgi Bozhilov-Slona, 1977
  4. The Former Communist Party House (facade): mosaic by Ioan Leviev and architect Vladimir Rangelov, 1969-1970
  5. Late Antique Residential Building “Еirene” / Trakart Cultural Center: mosaic floors, built between the middle of the 4th and the middle of the 5th century
  6. Underpass to Banya Starinna (Chifte Ottoman Baths): mosaic panels by Ioan Leviev, 1970s
  7. Chitalishte “Aleko Konstantinov” (facade): mosaic by Valchan Petrov, 1980
  8. Plovdiv Regional Archaeological Museum: fragments of the mosaic floors of the Narcissus building (3rd century) and the Ancient Synagogue (4th century), a mosaic with birds (3rd century)
  9. Plovdiv International Fair Central Building (facade): mosaic “Mercury” by Hristo Stefanov and Valentin Starchev, 1987
  10. The Roundabout at the Plovdiv International Fair: mosaic “Yuri Gagarin” by Ioan Leviev, 1970
  11. Block 15 next to the Old Town Hall of Trakiya Neighborhood (facade): mosaic by Trifon Nedelchev, Margarita Tomova and Sasho Baldev, 1980s
  12. The Polyclinic of Trakiya Neighborhood (water facility in front of the main facade): mosaic by Trifon Nedelchev and Margarita Tomova, 1980s

The mosaic tour will be presented to the citizens of Plovdiv and the guests of the city through an open-air exhibition. The mosaics from the tour will be presented visually and textually (Bulgarian and English) on vinyl panels. The exhibition will open on October 4 (Monday) in the square located northeast of the Episcopal (Bishop’s) basilica and will close on October 24, 2021.

The history, technique and technology of the mosaics will be the subject of a public lecture in the Episcopal (Bishop’s) Basilica of Philippopolis on October 4 (Monday), starting at 6.30 PM; the lecture will open the Mosaic Week in Plovdiv.

On October 9 and 10 a two-day free training program for up to ten city guides from Plovdiv is planned and will include both a lecture course and a demonstration tour of all the mosaics.

Mosaic Week in Plovdiv 2021 is a project of the Balkan Heritage Foundation, supported by the Municipality of Plovdiv and included in the Cultural Calendar of the city for 2021.

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