Location: In the Marathasa Valley on the north side of the Troodos range of mountains in the village of Pedoulas.

Founding date: 1474

Architecture: Small timber-roofed, with an L-shaped narthex covering the church's west and south side. The narthex was used as a place set aside for the women, whereas the men entered the main church.

Frescoes: This church is one of the few in Cyprus where the name of the artist survives. Minas followed the local Byzantine tradition and the iconographical programme with influences from the last phase of Byzantine tradition as it developed in Thessaloniki and Macedonia in addition to western art evident in the small details in certain scenes.

Two icons in the church itself, a Virgin Hodegetria and an Archangel Michael painted by Minas were taken to the Church of the Holy Cross at Pedoulas for security reasons.

On the small blind arch over the south entrance, which appears to have originally been the church's main entrance, there is a bust of the Archangel Michael, while Christ Life-Giving and the Virgin Hodegetria are painted on either side of the entrance.

The artist used an extremely personal style; he broke down both faces and background into crooked geometrical lines and had a preference for red which he too broke down into various shades. In spite of the lack of correct proportions in rendering the human form, he succeeded in placing people comfortably in multi-person scenes and in giving the scenes breadth without however managing to correctly express volume and depth.

Irrespective of the influences on Minas, both from the last Renaissance of Byzantine painting and from western art, he remained a true naïve painter of his time.

Athanasios Papageorgiou

Churge of Archangelos MichaelChurge of Archangelos Michael


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