Science and Scholarship in Poland
At the turn of 2011/2012, Polish scientists secured medieval paintings in the so-called Raphelion, or religious buildings dedicated to the Archangel Raphael in Banganarti, Sudan. This unique church building from mid-eleventh century was an important pilgrimage centre of in the Christian kingdom Makurii until mid-fourteenth century. Necessary conservation work was possible wilt financial support of PKN Orlen.
"In addition to conservation, we have also performed restoration and protection work. W stabilised substrate layers, exterminated insects feeding in the layer of plaster, and cleaned and preserved the colour scheme of the most important paintings" - said Dr. Bogdan T. Żurawski from the Department of African Cultures of the Institute of Mediterranean and Oriental Cultures PAS, head of research. Work in Banganarti is conducted under a concession of the Centre of Mediterranean Archaeology of the University of Warsaw.
Moreover, in the chapel of the holy healers Cosma and Damian, using the strip belt method (not destroying the inscriptions on the walls) Polish conservators unveiled earlier paintings. This allowed Nubian wall painting experts to look at the previously covered iconographic themes.