Black House

Active Project
Lviv, Ukraine

Site History and Significance

A Striking Renaissance Building in Central Lviv

Dating to the sixteenth century, the Black House owes its name to the distinctive dark color of its rusticated facade. The building is located on Rynok Square (also known as Market Square), part of the historic center of Lviv inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List in 1998. Since 1926, the Black House has belonged to the Lviv Historical Museum. Restoration of the facade and its decorative elements, undertaken with support from the U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation, was completed in 2019.

Our Involvement

Protecting the Facade during Wartime

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February of 2022, concerns quickly grew that flying debris from missile strikes might damage historic buildings, including the Black House. With the support of the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv and a further grant from the U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation, World Monuments Fund (WMF) designed and installed a special protective covering over the Black House’s facade to safeguard the building from potential damage while preserving the aesthetic integrity of the Market Square. The covering bears a 1:1 image of the facade over which it hangs, minimizing the visual invasiveness of the intervention to pedestrians and allowing for at least a modicum of normalcy in difficult times.

Learn More

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Last updated: January 2024.

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