Recently, during the ongoing repair and restoration work on the emergency pillar under the economic gate of the fence of the former Potocki Palace complex, we came across a part of a suspension arch, which can be both the foundation for the pillar and part of the foundations of old buildings or underground utilities. The discovery was of great interest to archaeologists and historians, who claim that the entire history of the Palace is underground. The work was suspended to prepare permits for archaeological research and to draw up an individual program of exploration and excavation.
The Space for Innovative Creations PALACE predicts a lot of work for archaeologists and expects interesting finds that no one has ever known about before. After all, archaeological research in the city was carried out in very rare cases, more like rescue archaeology, and not at all on the territory of the palace. The plan is to conduct GPR scanning, reconnaissance, and a full excavation. Each of these stages requires time and money, so blago developer joined the project to finance it. Our company was the only sponsor of the first stage of the archaeological research. We not only create the modern architecture of the city, but also help in the preservation of architectural monuments. According to Volodymyr Haidar, director of the Palace, this is a real precedent for the whole of Ukraine when patrons come forward to discover and explore the past.
The excavations at the first stage will be carried out in several stages, the first of which will concern the household gate, the territory on both sides of the gate and the fence. The second stage will include one of the pits for the study of the underground passage and the foundations of the wall near the building Z. The next stage, according to the program, is to study the central and right wings of the palace, adjacent to the building G, under which there is probably an underground part of the palace with its foundations.
The complex of the former Potocki Palace is a well-known place in the central part of Ivano-Frankivsk. The historic buildings have survived to this day with traces of multiple transformations and destruction and are of great historical and cultural value. This is the legacy of the palace and hospital stages of the complex’s functioning not only for the city but also for Europe. However, due to certain historical features related to its ownership and use as a restricted object, its history still remains a mystery, which the initiators of the research, the Municipal Enterprise PIK PALATS, undertook to solve. Previously, no special archaeological excavations were carried out on the territory of the Complex, so the archaeological remains of buildings discovered underground will be a valuable find for Ivano-Frankivsk.
Historical background. The foundation of the residence palace, as well as the fortress city of Stanislaviv itself, is associated with the wealthy Potocki family, whose representatives at various times held high positions at the court of the Polish king. The complex itself was named in honor of Andriy Potocki and was an integral part of the Renaissance city, a prototype of an ideal European city.
Historical documents show that the owners of the city hosted many honored guests in their residence. Shortly before his coronation, Hetman Jan Sobieski, the Great Crown Prince, stayed here, and in 1686, before his campaign in Moldova, he visited as the Polish king. A frequent guest of J. Potocki in the early seventeenth century was the Transylvanian prince Ferenc Rakoczy. In the 20s of the seventeenth century, thanks to the Jesuits of Stanyslaviv, Anna, the wife of Pylyp Orlyk (the creator of the first Ukrainian constitution), and her two daughters had the opportunity to stay in the palace under the protection of Iosyp Potocki as an ally of Ivan Mazepa in the anti-Russian struggle.
In 1792, the estate became the property of the city, and the palace was turned into an Austrian military hospital. Since then, the complex has not changed its functional purpose until 2004. The hospital, which has been here for more than two centuries, is one of the oldest in Ukraine.
At the end of 2017, the complex of buildings of the former Potocki Palace was transferred to the ownership of the city community.
For a long time, the buildings were locked and not used in any way. It was only in 2014 that local artists and cultural figures became interested in the complex to prevent their further destruction and breathe a “second life” into them. Since then, thanks to this initiative, the territory of the Palace has been used for cultural and artistic presentations, forums, exhibitions, and workshops. The most famous of them are: “Blacksmiths’ Festival, open-air movie screenings, Carpathian Space and Porto Franco festivals, charity fairs in support of the Armed Forces, etc.