Dating russian icons
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A peculiarity of dates written on icons is that many are dated from rusdian "Creation of the World", which in Eastern Orthodoxy was believed to have taken place on September 1 in the year 5, before the birth of Jesus.
Russian icons Dating
During the Soviet era in Russia, former village icon painters in PalekhMstyoraand Kholuy transferred their techniques to laquerware, which they decorated with ornate depictions of Russian fairy tales and other non-religious scenes. Most distinguished within this relatively new art form are the intricate Palekh miniature paintings on a black lacquer background. Many Russian icons were destroyed, or sold abroad, by agents of the Soviet government; some were Dating russian icons to avoid destruction, or were smuggled out of the country. Since the fall of communism, numbers of icon painting studios have again opened and are painting in a variety of styles for the local and international market.
Many older, hidden icons have also been retrieved from hiding, or brought back from overseas. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the market for icons expanded beyond Orthodox believers to include those collecting them as examples of Russian traditional art and culture. The same period witnessed much forgery of icons painted in the Pre-Nikonian manner. Such fakes, often beautifully done, were artificially aged through skillful techniques and sold as authentic to Old Believers and collectors. Some still turn up on the market today, along with numbers of newly painted intentional forgeries, as well as icons sold legitimately as new but painted in earlier styles.
Many icons sold today retain some characteristics of earlier painting but are nonetheless obviously contemporary. Painting techniques and collecting[ edit ] Example of panel cross members or "back slats" used in pre Russian icons Most Russian icons are painted using egg tempera on specially prepared wooden panels, or on cloth glued onto wooden panels. Gold leaf is frequently used for halos and background areas; however, in some icons, silver leaf, sometimes tinted with shellac to look like gold,  is used instead, and some icons have no gilding at all.
Russian icons may also incorporate elaborate tinbronze or silver exterior facades that are usually highly embellished and often multi-dimensional. These facades are called rizas or oklads. A regular aspect of icon painting is to varnish over the image with drying oileither immediately after the paint is dry, or later on. Riza are also being electroplated to add a thin layer of silver or even gold. Old riza are sometimes added to new icons of the same size and image, a practice made possible by the standardization of patterns and size common in Old Russia. So an icon of the "Kazan Mother of God" may be a new forgery covered by an authentic old riza.
New cast metal icons are also a problem. Cast from old examples, they are very difficult to distinguish from authentic pieces. Some are created legitimately to sell at fair prices as new religious objects, but the unscrupulous will offer new casts as antiques. Out of the hundreds of icons our firm receives each year for consignment, well over 50 percent are rejected due to the problems previously mentioned. So when it comes to buying, collectors must be very cautious about with whom they deal. An itinerant Russian immigrant with no phone or permanent address is not a good bet. Nor should a collector consider someone an expert just because he or she traveled to Russia or is displaying a large quantity of icons.
The vintage icons one encounters on various online outlets such as eBay are often outright fakes. Perhaps the biggest problem facing many dealers trading in icons today is that it is only a business.
Dzting That is to say, while they may be well intentioned, they have not taken the enormous amount of time required to really learn rusaian what they are selling. Subsequently, the sales pitch usually is a mish mash of truths and untruths, and eager and willing buyers go home tussian they've bought one thing, while in fact they've Datiny something completely different. Besides continually educating yourself, the safest protection Dating russian icons to purchase iicons from dealers who offer an unconditional guarantee that the item you are purchasing is guaranteed to be as described. Of course, never buy anything from someone who tells you to "make the final call" as russkan the item's age, condition, etc.
Of all the things best to aDting about icons is perhaps Datinng they rjssian Dating russian icons sacred objects. They russoan friends of the Russians who owned them; the helpers and comforters to jcons they turned in all the trials of life. To most of us brought up in different traditions ivons the West, religious art may be inspiring, and it may be decorative. But to the Russians, it was literally holy. Since the fall icond Communism, the icon saints of old Daitng, long hidden in the candle-lit shadows of icon corners, can now be found silently preaching in the marketplace of today.
As a consequence, the art of old Russia is now better known and recognized throughout the world than ever before in history. According to tradition, the rusisan Tikhvin icon was painted by the Evangelist Luke Datnig sent by him to Antioch. From Antioch, the icon was sent to Jerusalem, and later, in the 5th century, to Constantinople where a temple was built especially for it in the Blachere District. Although the icon disappeared from Constantinople several times, the last time it left the ancient city was in The first people to record its miraculous appearance were fishermen on Lake Lodoga, who reported seeing a bright light above them. The icon then came to rest about 25 miles from the lake at Smolnovo.
The residents there built a chapel, and many were cured of ailments. The icon is said to have mysteriously moved about from place to place, and in each place, the people erected chapels and soon temples. The icon finally came to rest at Tikhvin on the Tikhvin River in A wooden temple was built, dedicated to the feast of the Dormition, and the many who came to venerate the icon were cured of their ailments. Several times the wooden temple that housed the miraculous image was leveled by fire, but the icon remained unharmed. Through the efforts of Prince Basil Ivanovicha stone church was built to replace the wooden temple, which had burned down.
During construction, a section of arches crumbled, burying 20 workmen. Although all considered them dead, after three days the 20 men were found alive. About 50 years later, a monastery was established at the church. The Tikhvin Monastery was believed saved from destruction by the intercession of the Tikhvin Mother of God in when the Swedish forces invaded the country and besieged the cloister. The size of the icon pictured here suggests it was most likely a church icon placed in the local tier of the iconostasis.
It is a fine example of an icon which displays a small, but all important feature, revealing one of the first elements of Western influence to be detected in traditional icon painting of the period. This is the most famous of the icons attributed to St. It was brought to Kiev from Constantinople inand then taken by the great Prince Andrey Bogolyubsky during his sacking of Kiev. Init was placed in the city of Vladimir, from which the name is derived. It is considered a great miracle worker, and consequently, multitudes of copies exist. The original icon has been repainted several times, and after restoration, only the faces of the Mother and Child remained original.
The original icon is displayed at the Tretyakov Museum in Moscow. A bitter battle persists between the Russian Orthodox Church and the government of Russia over this and many other famous icons. The Church demands the return of icons which were stripped from the churches during the Communist period. The government insists that they are national ethnographic art treasures belonging to the people. This icon illustrates a more naturalistic rendering, a major deviation from the flat old or Byzantine style icons. Here, both the face of Mary and Christ are rounded and somewhat more three-dimensional. Mismatched riza Another thing to consider when buying Russian icons covered by riza is the matching of the image with the openings in the riza.
In this way, once you take the riza off, pay your attention whether all of the faces and hands are just in their right places and clearly seen through the openings.
The bubbly varies one receives on various online firearms such as eBay are often difficult situations. This site illustrates a more suitable choice, a major deviation from the needs old or Indian style icons. To bouncing the real, lost paint is fucked, sometimes skillfully, sometimes crudely.
This simply means that excessive restoration, especially when it comes to repainted hands and faces, greatly reduces the value of any item. Therefore, when buying one of the antique Russian icons, make sure it was restored by a professional restorer. Use the black light to know the truth! Otherwise, you will waste your money. This simple yet effective test can help you spot a fake.