Augustinian Monastery and Church
The Augustinian Monastery in Vrchlabi is a complex of Baroque buildings, now protected national heritage. It is the seat of the Krkonose Museum today, run by the Krkonossky National Park Administration, and the monastery church is used primarily as a concert hall due to its great acoustics.
The monastery was established in 1705 by Maxmilian Morzin. The Baroque style monastery with Neoclassical decorations is one of the town’s highlights and dominates an extensive monastery garden, adjacent to which is the palace park. The monastery was completed in 1725 following a project by Austrian architect Adam Auer before the entire complex was acquired by the Augustinians. The monastery church was dedicated to St. Augustine in an inauguration by the Hradec Kralove Bishop, Mauricius Adolf Karel of Pharsal. The residential premises of the monastery now house a Krkonose Museum exhibition on the nature and history of the region, and a part of the arcaded walkway is frequently used for various short-term exhibitions.
The interior furnishings of the church include seven portal-type altars made in 1725–1735 with valuable Baroque art and the main high altar, 19 m in height, made in the Rococo style, with a motif of St. Augustine. A valuable organ from 1895 was manufactured by the renowned Rieger company of Krnov.
The high altar, 19 m in height, has a motif of St. Augustine painted by Franz Dalliger of Prague. The most valuable art work is the altar of the Holy Cross on the right-hand side of the presbytery, probably made by Jan Frantisek Pacak, who was an assistant to the renowned sculptor and carver Matthias Bernard Braun. The remarkable ceiling paintings were created by Ignatz and Gottfried Tauchmann of Vrchlabi. The interior furnishings of the church create a harmonic unit. The church is often used as a concert hall due to its great acoustics, and also as a ceremonial hall including for weddings. It is not freely accessible. During the Vrchlabi Musical Summer festival, classical music concerts are held here. The church has been open to visitors for many years during the summer holidays, from Tuesdays to Sundays from 10am to 3pm.