A replica of the famous Santiago de Compostela Cathedral, one of the most important pilgrimage sites in Europe, has been created out of ice on Hrebienok, a popular tourist site in the High Tatras.
It is part of the popular Tatra Ice Cathedral project which was inspired by the Way of St James this year. It will be on display during the entire winter season. Given the current anti-pandemic measures, it is currently open only for visitors fully vaccinated against Covid or those who have recovered from the disease within the last 180 days ago, the TASR newswire reported.
Symbolism important these days
The ice cathedral was created by US artist Griffon Ramsey and a group of two dozen sculptors from Slovakia and the Czech Republic led by Adam Bakoš. They used 1,880 ice blocks, weighing a total of 225 tonnes.
The ice cathedral contains iconic details of its model in Santiago de Compostela, such as a low-key circle on the façade with Greek symbols in an unusual reverse order, which symbolises the end of old times and the beginning of something new. It is also decorated with ice shells, a symbol of the pilgrimage way.
A wooden statue of St James is situated in the left-wing of the cathedral, said Lukáš Brodanský of the Vysoké Tatry mountain resort, as reported by TASR.
The symbolism of the cathedral is more than current, Brodanský continued.
“Just like the end of a pilgrimage in Santiago de Compostela is seen as the beginning of something new, our big wish is that the omega and alpha from the cathedral symbolise the end of bad Covid times and the beginning of a new age going towards better days,” he said, as quoted by TASR.
One of the technological novelties includes thermal isolation under the roof of the dome in which the cathedral is placed, which makes it easier to keep the cathedral in good condition.