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Author Topic: Strange icons  (Read 36056 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #180 on: March 11, 2013, 05:49:49 PM »



...as compared to this one...





The presence of Christ blessing, not the Mother of God, in the upper border is a great improvement on the first composition. However, there are a couple of errors in this one as well: St Joachim was an aged man at the time, so his hair and beard should be white or gray, not brown. The same error is seen in the first image, which also shows St Anna as youthful. The crowns above the buildings on the left and right are a motif expressing martyrdom (the expression "crown of martyrdom" is frequently used liturgically and in the lives of saints), such as seen in icons of the 40 Martyrs of Sebaste, or in icons of other martyrs where an angel is seen holding a crown above the saint's head. Sts Joachim and Anna lived to old age, they did not die as martyrs.
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« Reply #181 on: March 11, 2013, 06:15:02 PM »

I assumed the crowns represented that their house would become associated with royalty.
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« Reply #182 on: March 11, 2013, 06:37:15 PM »

I assumed the crowns represented that their house would become associated with royalty.

Understandable, but not the case. The usual iconographic way of showing someone is of noble birth is by their clothing: elaborate cuffs and necklines, and sometimes decorated outer garments. People of high birth who forsake their wealth and privilege for a life of poverty or monasticism are shown wearing plain outer garments in drab colors, while the neckline and cuffs of their inner tunic are decorated.
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« Reply #183 on: March 11, 2013, 08:31:25 PM »


Wow!  LBK, you are so smart!  I never knew that about the crowns.

You are definitely my go-to person when it comes to icons!
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« Reply #184 on: March 11, 2013, 09:03:58 PM »

I assumed the crowns represented that their house would become associated with royalty.

Understandable, but not the case. The usual iconographic way of showing someone is of noble birth is by their clothing: elaborate cuffs and necklines, and sometimes decorated outer garments. People of high birth who forsake their wealth and privilege for a life of poverty or monasticism are shown wearing plain outer garments in drab colors, while the neckline and cuffs of their inner tunic are decorated.

However, were not Anna and Joachim of the line of David?
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« Reply #185 on: March 11, 2013, 09:27:26 PM »

I assumed the crowns represented that their house would become associated with royalty.

Understandable, but not the case. The usual iconographic way of showing someone is of noble birth is by their clothing: elaborate cuffs and necklines, and sometimes decorated outer garments. People of high birth who forsake their wealth and privilege for a life of poverty or monasticism are shown wearing plain outer garments in drab colors, while the neckline and cuffs of their inner tunic are decorated.

However, were not Anna and Joachim of the line of David?

Joachim was from David's line, Anna from Aaron's. Being that as it may, the crowns in the second image posted speak of martyrdom, not of noble birth. Their presence in the image distorts what the Church teaches about these two saints.

Here are examples of historic icons of the Forty Martyrs of Sebaste which show martyr's crowns floating in mid-air:





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« Reply #186 on: March 12, 2013, 12:15:32 AM »

....so, what about this one?




....and is it okay for the Theotokos to wear the "crown"?  I've heard that is a RC invention, and that the Orthodox shun away from placing a crown on her head?

Is that true?



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« Reply #187 on: March 12, 2013, 12:18:59 AM »

That one was posted recently in the Schlock Icons thread, starting with this post:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,47878.msg893114.html#msg893114
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« Reply #188 on: March 12, 2013, 12:23:14 AM »


Got it!  Thanks!

I'm glad the "crown" is allowed.  We've got a really pretty icon in our church, where she's wearing a crown.



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« Reply #189 on: March 12, 2013, 12:51:11 AM »


Got it!  Thanks!

I'm glad the "crown" is allowed.  We've got a really pretty icon in our church, where she's wearing a crown.


It's not that crowns are actually prohibited, but they are an unnecessary addition which adds nothing useful or edifying to what is being expressed in the icon. In some cases, the combination of an elaborately-decorated riza/oklad and sumptuous crowns on both the Virgin's and Child's heads, turns the icon into a gaudy, glittering bauble, rather than a work of gravitas, stillness, and spiritual power. The covering of all but the faces and hands of the Virgin and Child also robs the icon of much of the detail which expresses and proclaims what the Church teaches.
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« Reply #190 on: March 12, 2013, 06:29:54 PM »


Here's another question I have - why is her cheek bleeding?



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« Reply #191 on: March 12, 2013, 06:31:32 PM »

Very good question.  Shocked
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« Reply #192 on: March 12, 2013, 06:32:07 PM »

...and one more that was just posted on Facebook by a priestly friend.



I understand it's Tzar Nicholas, but, why is he holding the world, and why the crown of thorns?  It's as if he's being depicted as Christ.    .... I did notice the tiny crown above his head, and now know what that means thanks to LBK's post above!  Cheesy

The crowns above the buildings on the left and right are a motif expressing martyrdom (the expression "crown of martyrdom" ...
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« Reply #193 on: March 12, 2013, 06:34:26 PM »

I believe the globe thing with the Cross sticking out of it was a symbol of royalty in some countries. You see it in old tapestries of kings of England, for instance.
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« Reply #194 on: March 12, 2013, 06:38:36 PM »

I understand it's Tzar Nicholas, but, why is he holding the world

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« Reply #195 on: March 12, 2013, 06:55:04 PM »


Here's another question I have - why is her cheek bleeding?





The Iveron (Iverskaya) icon, named after the Athonite monastery, also known as Portaitissa (of the Portal) has quite a colorful history. During the ninth century, Emperor Theophilus, who was an iconoclast, ordered the wholesale destruction of icons, wherever they were. His troops would raid churches, houses, and anywhere they thought icons could be found. A soldier saw this icon of the Mother of God at a woman's house, and stabbed it with his sword. The Virgin's face immediately began to bleed, and the soldier fled in fright.

How this woman's icon found its way to Mt Athos is another, and wonderful, story.  Smiley

There are other icons of the Mother of God which have bled after being attacked. The Cypriot Makhairas (Of the Dagger) icon is one, where, IIRC, a Saracen attacked the icon, which bled. This miracle not only led him to repent of his act, but he was also later baptized into the Christian faith.
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« Reply #196 on: March 12, 2013, 06:59:11 PM »

...and one more that was just posted on Facebook by a priestly friend.



I understand it's Tzar Nicholas, but, why is he holding the world, and why the crown of thorns?  It's as if he's being depicted as Christ.    .... I did notice the tiny crown above his head, and now know what that means thanks to LBK's post above!  Cheesy

The crowns above the buildings on the left and right are a motif expressing martyrdom (the expression "crown of martyrdom" ...

Ah, yes, another product of the fevered imaginations of Russian ultranationalist ultramonarchist brigade, who regard the assassination of Tsar Nicholas as a "redeeming sacrifice", in the same way Christ's sacrifice redeems mankind. Vile, heretical rubbish. Schlock of the worst kind.
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« Reply #197 on: March 12, 2013, 06:59:16 PM »

Wow!  Nice.

We have a similar icon in our church.  I was told the story, that a man was driving his cart along a back road, and encountered a woman carrying a child, walking in the mud.  Feeling sorry for her, he stopped and offered to give her a ride.  She and her little boy, got in the back of the cart.

As he was driving along the oxen slowed, and he pulled out his whip to give them some encouragement.  As he reached back to get some speed, he felt that he had hit the woman in the back.  Fearing he had hurt her, he immediately stopped and jumped out to take a look.....she was gone, and in her place was an icon of the Mother of God, holding the Christ Child....with a bleeding cheek, where the whip had snapped at her.

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« Reply #198 on: March 12, 2013, 07:00:23 PM »

...and one more that was just posted on Facebook by a priestly friend.



I understand it's Tzar Nicholas, but, why is he holding the world, and why the crown of thorns?  It's as if he's being depicted as Christ.    .... I did notice the tiny crown above his head, and now know what that means thanks to LBK's post above!  Cheesy

The crowns above the buildings on the left and right are a motif expressing martyrdom (the expression "crown of martyrdom" ...

Ah, yes, another product of the fevered imaginations of Russian ultranationalist ultramonarchist brigade, who regard the assassination of Tsar Nicholas as a "redeeming sacrifice", in the same way Christ's sacrifice redeems mankind. Vile, heretical rubbish. Schlock of the worst kind.

Thank you.  I had thought the same thing....but, wanted to make sure it wasn't the Ukrainian in me imagining things.  Cheesy
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« Reply #199 on: March 13, 2013, 10:11:55 AM »

The Iveron (Iverskaya) icon...

Very poor copy...
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« Reply #200 on: March 13, 2013, 10:20:48 AM »

The Iveron (Iverskaya) icon...

Very poor copy...

I've seen many western-style icons that are far more saccharine and mawkish.  Tongue
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« Reply #201 on: March 13, 2013, 11:03:44 AM »

...and one more that was just posted on Facebook by a priestly friend.



I understand it's Tzar Nicholas, but, why is he holding the world, and why the crown of thorns?  It's as if he's being depicted as Christ.    .... I did notice the tiny crown above his head, and now know what that means thanks to LBK's post above!  Cheesy

The crowns above the buildings on the left and right are a motif expressing martyrdom (the expression "crown of martyrdom" ...

Ah, yes, another product of the fevered imaginations of Russian ultranationalist ultramonarchist brigade, who regard the assassination of Tsar Nicholas as a "redeeming sacrifice", in the same way Christ's sacrifice redeems mankind. Vile, heretical rubbish. Schlock of the worst kind.

Thank you.  I had thought the same thing....but, wanted to make sure it wasn't the Ukrainian in me imagining things.  Cheesy


I've posted another image in similar vein in the "Schlock icons" thread, as is more appropriate  Wink :

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,47878.msg896367.html#msg896367
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« Reply #202 on: March 15, 2013, 05:13:57 AM »

From the website of the Finnish Orthodox Church. I have no idea who is depicted here.
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« Reply #203 on: March 15, 2013, 05:23:36 AM »

....so, what about this one?




....and is it okay for the Theotokos to wear the "crown"?  I've heard that is a RC invention, and that the Orthodox shun away from placing a crown on her head?

Is that true?

Wow! That's beautiful.

We have Icons portraying St. Mary with a crown in the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.





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« Reply #204 on: March 15, 2013, 05:57:01 AM »

From the website of the Finnish Orthodox Church. I have no idea who is depicted here.

http://www.ortodoksi.net/index.php/Musta_Saara

I tried a machine translation of the page this image was on, but it's still pretty incomprehensible.

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« Reply #205 on: March 15, 2013, 09:32:28 AM »

http://www.ortodoksi.net/index.php/Musta_Saara

I tried a machine translation of the page this image was on, but it's still pretty incomprehensible.

Calling Alpo! Cheesy

Quote
Saint Sarah, also known as Sara-la-Kali ("Sara the Black", Romani: Sara e Kali), is the mythic patron saint of the Roma (Gypsy) people. The center of her veneration is Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, a place of pilgrimage for Roma in the Camargue, in southern France. Legend identifies her as the servant of one of the Three Marys, with whom she is supposed to have arrived in the Camargue.[1]

This is apparently her - the two statues on the Wiki and the page you linked are the same.

And it seems scholars don't like her that much:

Quote
Some authors have drawn parallels between the ceremonies of the pilgrimage and the worship of the Hindu goddess Kali, subsequently identifying the two.[4] Ronald Lee (2001) states:
If we compare the ceremonies with those performed in France at the shrine of Sainte Sara (called Sara e Kali in Romani), we become aware that the worship of Kali/Durga/Sara has been transferred to a Christian figure... in France, to a non-existent "sainte" called Sara, who is actually part of the Kali/Durga/Sara worship among certain groups in India.
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« Reply #206 on: March 15, 2013, 04:46:07 PM »

http://www.ortodoksi.net/index.php/Musta_Saara

I tried a machine translation of the page this image was on, but it's still pretty incomprehensible.

Calling Alpo! Cheesy

Quote
Saint Sarah, also known as Sara-la-Kali ("Sara the Black", Romani: Sara e Kali), is the mythic patron saint of the Roma (Gypsy) people. The center of her veneration is Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, a place of pilgrimage for Roma in the Camargue, in southern France. Legend identifies her as the servant of one of the Three Marys, with whom she is supposed to have arrived in the Camargue.[1]

This is apparently her - the two statues on the Wiki and the page you linked are the same.

And it seems scholars don't like her that much:

Quote
Some authors have drawn parallels between the ceremonies of the pilgrimage and the worship of the Hindu goddess Kali, subsequently identifying the two.[4] Ronald Lee (2001) states:
If we compare the ceremonies with those performed in France at the shrine of Sainte Sara (called Sara e Kali in Romani), we become aware that the worship of Kali/Durga/Sara has been transferred to a Christian figure... in France, to a non-existent "sainte" called Sara, who is actually part of the Kali/Durga/Sara worship among certain groups in India.

Thank you for these quotations.

So now it explains the earrings in this icon (or "icon"  Huh), but it stills not being explained why there is no headcovering (I can' bring now any example of a canonical icon that there is a woman without any headcovering). And I wonder what's written here.
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« Reply #207 on: March 15, 2013, 07:49:26 PM »

So now it explains the earrings in this icon (or "icon"  Huh), but it stills not being explained why there is no headcovering (I can' bring now any example of a canonical icon that there is a woman without any headcovering). And I wonder what's written here.

St Mary of Egypt is one.
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« Reply #208 on: March 15, 2013, 09:56:35 PM »

http://www.ortodoksi.net/index.php/Musta_Saara

I tried a machine translation of the page this image was on, but it's still pretty incomprehensible.

Calling Alpo! Cheesy

Quote
Saint Sarah, also known as Sara-la-Kali ("Sara the Black", Romani: Sara e Kali), is the mythic patron saint of the Roma (Gypsy) people. The center of her veneration is Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, a place of pilgrimage for Roma in the Camargue, in southern France. Legend identifies her as the servant of one of the Three Marys, with whom she is supposed to have arrived in the Camargue.[1]

This is apparently her - the two statues on the Wiki and the page you linked are the same.

And it seems scholars don't like her that much:

Quote
Some authors have drawn parallels between the ceremonies of the pilgrimage and the worship of the Hindu goddess Kali, subsequently identifying the two.[4] Ronald Lee (2001) states:
If we compare the ceremonies with those performed in France at the shrine of Sainte Sara (called Sara e Kali in Romani), we become aware that the worship of Kali/Durga/Sara has been transferred to a Christian figure... in France, to a non-existent "sainte" called Sara, who is actually part of the Kali/Durga/Sara worship among certain groups in India.

Thank you for these quotations.

So now it explains the earrings in this icon (or "icon"  Huh), but it stills not being explained why there is no headcovering (I can' bring now any example of a canonical icon that there is a woman without any headcovering). And I wonder what's written here.
I have seen icons of St. Katherine the Great Martyr depicted with earrings. It's not my favorite, but it's certainly not rare.

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Αναστάς ο Ιησούς από του τάφου, καθώς προείπεν, έδωκεν ημίν την αιώνιον ζωήν και το μέγα έλεος.
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« Reply #209 on: March 15, 2013, 10:19:53 PM »

I have seen icons of St. Katherine the Great Martyr depicted with earrings. It's not my favorite, but it's certainly not rare.



Quite true. Many ancient icons and mosaics of St Catherine (and other female saints of noble birth or regal rank) show her wearing earrings, though they are far less obvious and distracting than those in the icon you posted. A famous one is from St Catherine's Monastery in Sinai, from the 13th century:

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« Reply #210 on: March 15, 2013, 10:39:27 PM »

I have seen icons of St. Katherine the Great Martyr depicted with earrings. It's not my favorite, but it's certainly not rare.



Quite true. Many ancient icons and mosaics of St Catherine (and other female saints of noble birth or regal rank) show her wearing earrings, though they are far less obvious and distracting than those in the icon you posted. A famous one is from St Catherine's Monastery in Sinai, from the 13th century:


Yea, most of the ones I have seen (such as the one on my church's iconostasis) show the earrings as smaller and more akin to the one you posted.
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Αναστάς ο Ιησούς από του τάφου, καθώς προείπεν, έδωκεν ημίν την αιώνιον ζωήν και το μέγα έλεος.
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« Reply #211 on: March 16, 2013, 08:04:19 AM »

This is somehow supposed to be the Trinity. I think.



I know it was an old post but -
Is this actually even an EO icon?

It looks COMPLETLY masonic.... Never seen one like this in an EO church or elsewhere...
Just curious.
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« Reply #212 on: March 28, 2013, 11:30:59 AM »



Another one hypercolor.
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« Reply #213 on: March 28, 2013, 11:39:14 AM »

This is somehow supposed to be the Trinity. I think.



I know it was an old post but -
Is this actually even an EO icon?

It looks COMPLETLY masonic.... Never seen one like this in an EO church or elsewhere...
Just curious.


Not an icon at all, and has never been considered as one. It's a masonic painting.
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« Reply #214 on: March 28, 2013, 11:41:24 AM »



Another one hypercolor.

The Restoration of the Icons
, the festal icon of the Sunday of Orthodoxy. Nothing at all strange about it.

Hypercolor? What do you mean?  Huh
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« Reply #215 on: March 28, 2013, 11:44:18 AM »

Hypercolor? What do you mean?  Huh

Sweet pastel infantile coloristics. I'm not saying it's bad. I just don't like it.
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« Reply #216 on: March 28, 2013, 12:05:11 PM »

Hypercolor? What do you mean?  Huh

Sweet pastel infantile coloristics. I'm not saying it's bad. I just don't like it.

The icon you posted has been painted on a church wall. How an icon shows up on a computer screen is often not how it looks in its actual surroundings. Image processing, the settings on one's computer screen, and even the type of computer monitor can affect color perception. CRTs (picture tubes) are superior to flat screens in reproducing accuracy of color, shade, saturation, etc.

A good iconographer will examine the size of a church and the light which enters it, how much light, and where it falls, and select his palette (range of colors) accordingly. A large church which is well-lit by natural light can accept a bolder, stronger intensity of colors; a smaller church with diffuse lighting would be better served with a softer, warmer color range.

EDIT: The icon posted is probably also very large in real life, very likely several yards/meters across. What makes its way onto a computer monitor is a more highly-saturated version of the actual icon, due to the much smaller size of the digital image relative to the original.
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« Reply #217 on: March 28, 2013, 01:01:15 PM »

Hypercolor? What do you mean?  Huh

Sweet pastel infantile coloristics. I'm not saying it's bad. I just don't like it.

The icon you posted has been painted on a church wall. How an icon shows up on a computer screen is often not how it looks in its actual surroundings. Image processing, the settings on one's computer screen, and even the type of computer monitor can affect color perception. CRTs (picture tubes) are superior to flat screens in reproducing accuracy of color, shade, saturation, etc.

A good iconographer will examine the size of a church and the light which enters it, how much light, and where it falls, and select his palette (range of colors) accordingly. A large church which is well-lit by natural light can accept a bolder, stronger intensity of colors; a smaller church with diffuse lighting would be better served with a softer, warmer color range.

EDIT: The icon posted is probably also very large in real life, very likely several yards/meters across. What makes its way onto a computer monitor is a more highly-saturated version of the actual icon, due to the much smaller size of the digital image relative to the original.


I would venture to guess that this acrylic painted either on canvass and glued onto the wall or possibly acrylic painted directly on the wall.  While I'm not an artist and don't really know jack, my parish is in the process (a long at that - pay as you go and I hope the iconographer is healthy enough in his life to finish the church) of real frescoes on the walls.  Real frescoes (if it is not the following, then it is just a mural) have the base painting done in about a 12-hour window directly on wet plaster.  The plaster itself is the binder for the pigment and when totally dry becomes chemically the same as marble.  The details are added in the following days, where the initial period (12-24 hours approx after the 12-hour window) can be in between fresco and secco, while afterwards is secco I think using egg tempera.  This is the time-tested method for painting churches that are hundreds of years old with enduring frescoes.  At least currently in America, most "frescoes" and even panel icons are done in acrylic, with the wall panels usually done on canvas in a studio then glued onto the walls.  From what I have been told, painting in acrylic can be done much faster than traditional methods like fresco and egg tempera, allowing the iconographer to "produce" a lot more work.  Unfortunately, as Michal says, since acrylic is a synthetic paint that is only 50 or so years old, it is not time tested and moreso, looks rather bright and garish (although I'm told it can be made more subdued if intended) in comparison to traditional methods.  There is a beautiful Serbian church in the Sacramento area that I have sung a couple of concerts at.  It appears they did acrylic directly on dry-plastered walls and there is damage, I believe from water/rain leaks, in the pendentives.  Frescoes would be resistant from this type of water leaks for the most part.
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« Reply #218 on: March 28, 2013, 01:13:31 PM »

Quote
since acrylic is a synthetic paint that is only 50 or so years old, it is not time tested and moreso, looks rather bright and garish

Do not think that egg tempera is automatically more subdued in tone than acrylics. We are used to seeing old tempera icons under a layer of darkened olifa varnish, and centuries-old frescoes and murals (any painting, not just iconography) under decades or centuries of soot and grime, whether or not a top coat of varnish has been applied. The work of art restorers and conservators constantly proves this.
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« Reply #219 on: March 28, 2013, 08:36:08 PM »


I wish I could see the outside of the building better. This looks super occult from a distance. What is it depicting?
I was watching a Russian show this evening called Battle of the Prophets (Around minute 30 in http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qK2iK-hFD6Q), which compares various modern day prophets.
It compared/contrasted the canonized Matrona of Moscow with Vanga of Bulgaria, noting that they were both blind. It said that Vanga had a large following, was treated very well by the government even during the era promoting scientific materialism. Patriarch Alexei II presided at her funeral and a little body part(?) from her that was specially kept did not decay.

It adds that she was not canonized due to the issue with the ikons that you and others posted on page two of this thread. They (or at least the Trinity one) were considered Masonic ikons and that there was a religious problem with the depiction of the Trinity as a result. A person interviewed who was close to Vanga claimed that the  (or his backers?) took people's money donations and built the ikons in this way without people or Vanga expecting this. It claims towards the end of the clip (about minute 37) that the clergy were forced to consecrate the chapel/church after refusing to do so.

MK was here
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« Reply #220 on: March 28, 2013, 09:09:46 PM »

They (or at least the Trinity one) were considered Masonic ikons and that there was a religious problem with the depiction of the Trinity as a result.

There is no need for the existence of a masonic connection in the origin and painting of these images, There is a multitude of things wrong with all of them, not just the one of the Trinity, to render them completely and utterly unsuitable for veneration as icons.
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« Reply #221 on: March 29, 2013, 12:01:44 AM »

This is somehow supposed to be the Trinity. I think.




Are you sure that's supposed to be an Orthodox icon? Looks like an alchemical emblem.
Actually, it's masonic: http://goo.gl/vZWb9
Checkerboard floor is a giveaway, FYI. No idea why.

In the movie I mentioned above, it shows Nostradamus' tomb by a checker floor too.
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« Reply #222 on: April 01, 2013, 11:59:04 AM »

Quote
since acrylic is a synthetic paint that is only 50 or so years old, it is not time tested and moreso, looks rather bright and garish

Do not think that egg tempera is automatically more subdued in tone than acrylics. We are used to seeing old tempera icons under a layer of darkened olifa varnish, and centuries-old frescoes and murals (any painting, not just iconography) under decades or centuries of soot and grime, whether or not a top coat of varnish has been applied. The work of art restorers and conservators constantly proves this.


LBK,

Actually, for the most part, I am used to seeing relatively young (or brand new) egg tempera icons.  Nearly all of the icons in my church that are not the frescoes are painted by either our Matuschka (Mat. Anne Margitich) or Fr. Patrick Doolan, both of whom studied under Leonid Ouspensky in Paris before he reposed.  Nearly every acrylic icon I have seen has looked bright and garish in comparison (most notably those at the Antiochian parish where I grew up).
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« Reply #223 on: April 08, 2013, 01:52:47 PM »


Anybody know who the four figures are who are pouring the water?

This is the ceiling of a baptistry.

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« Reply #224 on: April 08, 2013, 01:55:23 PM »

Saints, I think?
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