Maxo Vanka Murals, St. Nicholas Croatian Catholic Church in Millvale


“The murals were created by Maxo Vanka, an artist with a spiritual sense of social justice. He moved from his homeland of Croatia to New York City in 1934, and Father Zagar, pastor of St. Nicholas, having seen an exhibition of his work, invited him to come to Millvale to “beautify the church and tell the story of this parish, the people.” Vanka went at it.”

BHF member Bette McDevitt is a prolific writer and a frequent contributor to the Western Pennsylvania History magazine, and the Heinz History Center has given us permission to feature a few of her stories here. Vanka painted the murals in 1937 and again in 1941, and they are truly magnificent. You can get more information at http://vankamurals.org/, but you can read Bette’s story here.

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