Always wanted to visit a bone ossuary. Not really sure why, except they just seem so bizarre. Finally got to Sedlec at Kutna Hora, Czech Republic. It didn't disappoint in the bizarre factor. I was so fascinated by how carefully arranged the bones were into the designs, I really didn't find it creepy; it's truly a work of art.
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Unlikely Art: Sedlec Ossuary
If you have a day to kill in Prague, I strongly suggest taking the hour train ride out to the medieval town of Kutna Hora. Amid the wonders of this charming village, you'll discover one of the most ghastly, morbid and, at the same time, spectacular displays of artistic ingenuity to be found anywhere. The Sedlec Ossuary is the location of a grand assembly of human bones from hundreds of years of human burial arranged and configured into large neat mounds, a giant chandelier, a coat of arms and several wall and ceiling adornments. The unique works of art were created by a wood carver named Frantisek Rint in the 1,800's. He was asked to place the bones uncovered by the construction of the church basement into orderly piles, but made art of them instead. The Ossuary is a real oddity and needs to be seen to be believed. Kutna Hora is home to many other attractions, such as an awesome brewery, called Dacicky, an intact medieval town center, the stunning Santa Barbara Cathedral and sweeping hilltop views over Bohemia. The greater Kutna Hora and Sedlec area are together a UNESCO World Heritage Site and worth a day trip from Prague.
Of all the unusual materials an artist can choose from to create art, human bone must be the most unlikely choice. The Sedlec Ossuary in Kutna Hora, Czech Republic is the sight of a strange gallery of art, composed entirely of human skeletal remains from the Middle Ages. The Schwarzenberg coat of arms above is one of many items created by a wood carver in the 1800's. The wood carver was commissioned to take inventory and neatly arrange the bones, but he decided to make a variety of sculptures and decorations with them instead. The Ossuary was created in the basement of a chapel located in a Roman Catholic cemetery to house the remains of over 40,000 individuals buried since the 1100's. Kutna Hora is located an hour outside of Prague, serviced by frequent trains and is well worth planning an extra day to see. Kutna Hora has many other sights and attractions, including a Medieval town center, two handsome cathedrals and beautiful views of the surrounding Bohemian landscape. Most important of all the attractions is the Dacicky Brewery, which makes some highly regarded Czech Pilzners and serves up a delicious goulash.