Palace of Culture”Moldova” National Museum Complex Iași
The Palace of Culture - palace of museums, acknowledged as an emblem of the city of Iaşi, was built in the neo-Gothic style, representing one of the last expressions of Romanticism in the official architecture.
Although it was not built on top of ancient foundations, as it was assumed at the beginning of the 20th century, the Palace partially stands on the ruins of the medieval princely courts, mentioned in documents of 1434.
The Palace, in its current aspect, became part of the Iaşi cityscape as early as 1914, when even the roof of the central tower was completed. The construction work of the palace was interrupted by World War I. The building was officially inaugurated by King Ferdinand the Unifier, and by Queen Mary, on October 11, 1925 as a Palace of Justice and Administration. Since 1955, the palace has been hosting four museums, becoming the cultural center of the city.
The ornamental interior of the palace.
The Hall of Honour
What draws attention from the first moment is the circular composition of the mosaic flooring - an accurate reproduction of the rosette in the Saint-Pierre-sur-Dives abbey church (1235-1245) in northern France (Calvados, Basse Normandie). The original 13th-century pattern was created by means of terracotta tiles and not of mosaic ones. By recreating here this model, specific to a Gothic cathedral, the architect wanted to convey the invoked atmosphere of sacredness to his edifice.
Gothic Bestiarum”Moldova” National Museum Complex Iași
Figurative mosaic, in which various representations of the Gothic bestiary are concentrically arranged: two-headed eagles, dragons, gryphons, lions.
Chandelier in the Main Hall”Moldova” National Museum Complex Iași
The Hall of Honor was designed as a large central area, having the height of the two floors, and a glass skylight as a ceiling, where initially a greenhouse with exotic plants was arranged.
View of the Main Hall from 1st floor”Moldova” National Museum Complex Iași
Painted glass”Moldova” National Museum Complex Iași
The Voivodes' Hall
A place of memory and space of celebrations, it owes its name to the gallery of portraits of the princes who ruled the country throughout time, in line with the model of European medieval castles. Along the two long sides of the room, in the upper part, 50 portraits can be seen. They provide the viewer with a glimpse of the national history through the faces of the country's greatest rulers, selected according to their importance to the history of the place, as it was perceived in the first quarter of the 20th century.
Monumental door in wrought iron and glass”Moldova” National Museum Complex Iași
Historical tree”Moldova” National Museum Complex Iași
Effigy of Moldova”Moldova” National Museum Complex Iași
The angel-held coat-of-arms”Moldova” National Museum Complex Iași
"Henri Coanda" Hall
During the period when the building served as the Justice and Administration Palace, the “Coandă” Hall was intended for the Jury Court. In the building, there were several such courtrooms, decorated with wall panelling, but this was the most spacious and well-placed one. Functionally, “Henri Coandă” inherits the role previously held by the Country Assembly Hall in the old Princely Palace.
Triptych”Moldova” National Museum Complex Iași
Decorative elements”Moldova” National Museum Complex Iași
Four museums in the Palace of Culture
In 1955, the Palace of Justice was assigned a new role, becoming the ”Palace of Culture”. It now hosts four national museums and the Centre for the Research and Conservation-Restoration of Heritage Items reunited under the prestigious name of ”Moldova” National Museum Complex.
Dr. Lacramioara Stratulat - Manager of the "Moldova" National Museum Complex IASI
Photo: Mihai Neagu, Gina Popa
Editing: Oana Popescu