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Photographer's Note

Istanbul has no shortage of houses of worship, and the Bulgarian Church of St. Stephen set along the shore of the Golden Horn blends in with its holy brethren at first glance; upon closer inspection, however, this cross-shaped basilica is like few others in the world.

Born of an early 19th century period of architectural experimentation in prefabrication, St. Stephen is made entirely out of cast iron. Even to this day, the walls are metal and spots of rust bloom from its interior archways like scarified flowers. The church consists of poured iron slabs that were floated on cargo ships from Vienna, down the Danube River, across the Black Sea, through the Bosphorus, only to then be assembled on-site.

Recently it's been renovated with funds both from Bulgaria and Turkey and is been reopened again on 6th of January, where both Turkish and Bulgarian presidents held speeches.

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Additional Photos by Mesut ILGIM (mesutilgim) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6710 W: 507 N: 19703] (107372)
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