Târgu Mureş Culture Palace

The symbol of the city of Târgu Mureş, the palace was built between 1907-1913 in Transylvanian Secession style (the Lechner school) after the plans of Komor Marcell and Jakab Dezső. At the present, it houses the Philharmonic Hall, the County Library, the Art Galleries and the History Museum. It is the most important achievement the municipal administration in the period before the first world war. It is the embodiment of the local taste, revealing the desire to show the enterprising genius of the Town Council, that supported the idea of modernization, urbanization and enlightenment of the town and it is to this process that we owe many public edifices for education, culture and social-political life. Inside the Palace of Culture in Tirgu Mures, besides the institutions we have already mentioned above, the City Cinema (1913-1957), the first Romanian Theater School (1934-1940), the State Theater (1946-1973), the Fine Arts and Music Secondary School (1949-1970), the Academy of Fine-Arts (1932-1949) and the County House for Guidance of the Folkloric Creation functioned (1950-1999).

As a monument of architecture, the Palace of Culture belongs to the Secession style. This fact is proved by the way in which both the details and the ensemble were solved, as well as the materials that were used: stone, marble, bronze, wood, brick, enamelled ceramics, wrought iron. Considering the different way in which the facades from one floor to another are designed and the way in which the windows and the doors are disposed, the monumentality and originality of the building are assured. Fine arts with their range of techniques and trends were subordinated to this aim. The result was a crowd of motifs that shock the unwarned visitor who is unable to grasp that the relation between decorative and architectural has many shortcomings on the whole but not in detail. Nevertheless the Palace of Culture remains a spot of interest, a mirror of an epoch, this being the reason for which many financial efforts have been made to keep and consolidate it as a valuable monument of Romanian architecture, art and culture.

That is how they came to represent the historical past of the city in frescoes, mosaics and stained glass windows, emphasizing the ethnographic and folkloric values of Transylvania. The Palace impresses both through its external and internal decorations. In the harmonious aspect of the whole, the Majolica roof manufactured at Zsolnai factories in Pecs, Hungary, as well as the monumental inlay carried out according to the plans of painter Korosfoi-Kriesch Aladar stand out; further, the bas relief's executed by master Kallos Ede dominating the front of the building, as well as Korosfoi-Kriesch Aladar’s frescoes inside, and the stained glass windows of masters Nagy Sandor and Thoroczkai-Wigand Ede, worked by Roth Miksa. The hall from the ground-floor, made of Carrara marble, is flanked by Venice mirrors and embellished with two frescoes displaying mythological scenes. The ante-room is 45 meter long.

The concert hall with 776 places forms the central part of the building. It is multifunctional and its height corresponds to the three levels of the building. At the beginning it was a concert hall for the Academy of Music of the town, which was founded in 1908 and moved in this building in 1913.The hall has an organ, the 1800th piece of the famous Rieger firm of Jagendorff. At that time, the organ was one of the biggest in Europe. Its movable console with three manuals, pedals, 63 registers; functions on the electro-pneumatic principle of. Fr. Dexler type and it has 4663 tubes. On the stage there appeared personalities like Pablo Cassals, Jan Kubelik, George Enescu, David Oistrah and Bartók Béla.

The Small Hall was and is used for special programs: conferences, vocal instrumental concerts, chamber-music concerts, recitals, rehearsals, meetings, scientific and literary manifestations. It is very beautifully decorated, with floral motifs on the walls and the stained-glass windows are perfectly integrated in the geometrical architecture of the hall, as a requirement of the Secession style. We can mention here the central stained-glass window that represents "Gabriel Bethlen among the Scientists," a work belonging to Roth Miska, a painter from Budapest, the author of the most important stained-glass windows.

The Mirrors' Hall follows the Entrance Hall, the most interesting and visited part of the architectural ensemble of the Palace of Culture, improperly called that way. In fact this hall would have been called "The Stained-Glass Window Hall" as the 12 stained-glass windows are by far more valuable then the two triptychs of mirrors with big frames and semicircular vaults richly adorned, mirrors that are placed on the lateral walls, each of them having above a panel folkloric and eth­nographic inspiration. The "Stained-Glass Window Hall" as we call it, is situated on the first floor and it extends over the whole Entrance Hall, covering the space bordered by the 12 bays of the main facade. Its floor is strengthened by reinforced concert. The length of the hall is emphasized by the mirrors that were placed according to the laws of parallel mirrors, lending to the whole a fascinating impression of infinite. This impression was partially broken, aggressively, by replacing the two strips of scarlet carpets that were laid along the hall from one mirror to the other, with other carpets that spoiled the unity of the composition.