Young mosaic artists at work: the precious mosaic of Capernaum is restored

Giacomo Pizzi12 November 2014

In the 1960s Fathers Stanislao Loffreda and Virgilio Corbo excavated in Capernaum  the remains of a Byzantine church with a mosaic floor. Very similar to mosaics found in nearby Tabgha, this 55 m² mosaic has geometric and decorative patterns with a peacock, symbol of immortality, at its center. The two archaeologists decided to remove the mosaic in order to discover what lay beneath, and it was in this manner that they discovered the remains of the house of Peter.

After having been removed from its original location, the mosaic remained on display in the archaeological park in Capernaum until 2012, the year in which it was possible to begin its restoration. Today, following two years of intensive efforts, the youths of the Mosaic Centre of Jericho have presented to the Custos of the Holy Land the results of the major work which has made it possible not only to restore the mosaic to its ancient splendor, but also to ensure its preservation for the future.

The Mosaic Centre of Jericho, continuing the work of Father Michele Piccirillo, not only carries out important restoration activities but also contributes to promoting the development of mosaic art among the younger generations, helping young apprentices learn the techniques of mosaic restoration and production.

The realization of this important project has been made possible thanks to the support of the Veneto Region and Association pro Terra Sancta, which for a number of years has been working together with the Mosaic Centre to promote training, preservation and restoration activities. Our common objective is based not only on the great historical and artistic value of these initiatives, but above all on the importance of providing opportunities to the young people in East Jerusalem and the Palestinian Territories to receive professional training, based on the beauty of the Holy Land.

Please help us to support these projects to continue the training of these young people and the restoration of the Holy Places.

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