The Menil’s Byzantine Fresco Chapel Ushers In A New Era
According to the article, in 2012, the original frescoes were carefully packed up and shipped back to their original home in a small church on the island of Cyprus. They’d been stolen during a Turkish invasion of the island in the 1970s, and eventually landed in the hands of Dominique de Menil. In 1987, Menil and the Church of Cypress settled on an agreement that would grant the Church ownership of the frescoes, but the Menils “would have the right to restore them and display them in a purpose-built Greek Orthodox Chapel in Houston” for the next two decades. When those decades were up, it was time to rethink the chapel’s purpose. (The video above captures the de-installation of the original frescoes in 2012.)
January 31, 2015 ushered in a new era of the Byzantine Fresco Chapel with the opening of an installation called The Infinity Machine. Canadian artists Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller have created a giant, rotating mobile from which hangs 150 antique mirrors highlighted by strategically placed lights and “deep, rumbling music that sounds like a cross between crashing waves and a passing subway train.”
The immersive exhibit is free to the public.