Expressive paintings made by a legendary Romanian painter in Agapia monastery
If you heard something about the Romanian painter Nicolae Grigorescu is very good, but if not you must hold something in your memory about. If you have by chance the opportunity to find a painting signed by Grigorescu, I would advice you to not hesitate even a minute, no matter the price. It is very possible that you won't have the second occasion.
His paintings are the best investment possible, and be sure to double its value within 5 years. You can be sure to sell it in the best conditions at least in Romania, but Grigorescu is becoming more international, viral and global day by day.
Grigorescu was born in 1838 and 10 years later he started painting icons, as an apprentice of a Czech master. He managed to sell almost all his paintings, but was still not able to make a living.
|The Monastery of Agapia welcomes the visitor with order, and many flowers.|
In 1858 he heard that the Holly Monastery of Agapia, in the Neamt County is to be restored and looks after very good painters, able to do that job. He managed somehow to get the money for coming to Agapia from Bucharest and showed him up before the superior nun. He did not trust very much that very young boy, but put it nevertheless to a test: he was supposed to paint an icon of The Holly Virgin Mary with the Baby Jesus. Grigorescu also smiled, showing himself a little arrogant, which made the Superior even more suspicious.
The coming facts were much more important than the first impressions: he painted the icon in the best conditions, and to the highest aestethic and quality standards! A peasant from Agapia served as a model, and the Superior ended to be convinced. Nicolae Grigorescu got the contract, and made an excellent job, transforming the Agapia monastery into the Sisstine Chapel of Romania. His Saints are alive,not totally according to the Byzantine traditions, but rather similar to the works of the famous masters of Italian Renaissance!
|If you understand art, you are going to fall with Grigorescu paintings grom Agapia monastery (an expressive yet impressive sample)|
The Monastery of Agapia lies only 40 km away from Piatra Neamt, and is neighbor to another renowned monastery, namely Varatec. It welcomes you in summer with many flowers and is overwhelming you through its dimensions, comparing to other monasteries from Romania. Agapia lies in the middle of a forest and has been build at 1642. Very few people are aware, that there is another Monastery Agapia, which is upper on the hills, and lost its wealthy due to a landfall. Agapia from the Valley, also known as the new Agapia, welcomes you with heavy smells, as the kitchen works hard for the Nuns, as also for the visitors who might need some refreshments (also possible to become a payed dormitory, on a budget). Once you enter the Church, everything else is totally forgotten. The paintings of Grigorescu are really amazing and breathtaking, and you will be able to better understand my long introduction. It is hard to describe that feeling, which is equally artistic and church ecstasy. Observe, please, and note, some specific paintings, and try to guess the foreign influences: "Angel leaving Tobie" is inspired by Rembrandt; " The funeral of Jesus Christ" on a theme of Tizian. The other ones are much more original, but not less valuable!
Afterward you can visit the Museum, exhibiting artistic artifacts and church works. Equally rich is the library, with its 15000 toms of old books. Surprise, you can even find a memorial house "Alexandru Vlahuta" (important Romanian writer, whose sister was a Nun in this monastery). The Agapia Monastery was very appealing for many Romanian cultural personalities, who used to come here.
So much culture will raise the inner man. If you are lucky enough, you can eat to the monastery, but you can also look a pension next to it, or wait to reach the town of Targu Neamt.