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Byzantine Fresco Chapel Museum
4011 Yupon Street @ Branard Street
Houston, TX 77006
Intimate in scale, the Byzantine Fresco Chapel is the repository of the only intact Byzantine frescoes of this size and importance in the Western Hemisphere.
Word on the Street
It is easy to go to a museum, see the pretty pictures and think nothing of their history. That isn't the case with the Byzantine Fresco Chapel Museum in Houston. The history behind the Byzantine Fresco Chapel Museum is as interesting as the paintings themselves. The paintings were stolen from a chapel in Cyprus in the 1980s, cut into pieces and smuggled out of the country with the intention of selling them. Along came the Menil Foundation who, with the blessing of the Church of Cyprus, bought the paintings from the thieves. Then they began to restore the pictures over a period of two years. Older children can appreciate the story behind the museum while looking at the pictures themselves. (Hint: Frescos are paintings made on wet plaster.) If they don't really "get" the pictures, they can still enjoy the beauty at the museum and, trust me, there's plenty of that! The Byzantine Fresco Chapel is really a sight to behold.If the kids get a little loud inside, you can always bring them out to run around the grounds while you enjoy the unique architecture.