The byzantine church of Taxiarches is situated in the village Kostaniani, about a few kilometers from the archaelogical site of Dodoni, in Prefecture of Ioannina. The specific region of the western area of the prefecture is characterised by birth deficit, low developed economy, with high unemployment.As a result of young people leave their birth-places and immigrate to Ioannina, or other large cities. In the field of restoration of byzantine-postbyzantine monuments the Ministry of Culture has undertook few works. Except the archaelogical site of Dodoni, were a lot of restoration works, along with excavation are being held, a low scale of consolidation works have been completed in other monuments.
The byzantine church of Taxiarches was built in the second half of the 13th century, It belongs to the "cross-vaulted" type. In the interior the church is decorated with wall paintings, dated in the late 13th century. The decoration possesses close affinities to the frescoes of the late byzantine churches of Arta, teh capital of the so called "Despotate of Epirus", the independent state-principality, founded in Epirus after the Latin conquest of Constantinopel. Within the scope of the project we intend to conserve the wall paintings of hte church and edit an archaelogical guide.
All this schedule aims to create jobs, encourage tourism, such as to demonstrate the common cultural heritage between the two countries, in the field of religious art. As a long term result, we hope to contribute to create facilities for the growth of the local economy.
In the frame of the programme the Ephorate of Antiquities of Ioannina wants to focus on the restoration of the last byzantine frescoes from the church of Taxiarches in Kostaniani, in order to facilitate the conditions for creating jobs and preserve an important monument of the cultural heritage of the area.