Author Topic: Strange icons  (Read 55233 times)

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Offline orthonorm

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #270 on: June 25, 2013, 01:26:30 PM »
LBK ain't going to like this because although you can't depict God the Father as an "old man" nor at all, you can depict Him as a man in this particular icon. Making the icon so precise to bring out the noetic nature of the visitors to Abraham I think means you can no longer have your Trinity cake and eat it to.

It seems almost the exact same as any other Hospitality icon, except the stylistic differences. So what do you mean? This seems to do what you're saying a bit more:



"Style" is important, frankly I don't believe in such a thing. Maybe I am wrong, and LBK will think it is wonderful.

My argument goes to the Trinitarian interpretation of Rublev, which LBK AFAIK defends, and yet I cannot for the life of me understand. I mean I understand the reasons for the Trinitarian interpretation but not her breaking ranks with her absolute prohibition against depicting God the Father.

I could be wrong about all this. But when I've asked her about it before, she simply goes into tangential questioning mode.
« Last Edit: June 25, 2013, 01:27:11 PM by orthonorm »
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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #271 on: June 25, 2013, 01:51:07 PM »
Interesting...all three angels in that icon have crosses in their halos.  Three Christs?  Did the Father and the Holy Spirit also die on the Cross? 
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Offline Nephi

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #272 on: June 25, 2013, 02:03:45 PM »
Interesting...all three angels in that icon have crosses in their halos.  Three Christs?  Did the Father and the Holy Spirit also die on the Cross? 

That's the only time I've seen a depiction like that. It seems the norm is to not have any crosses, but a Google search shows the middle one sometimes with a cross-halo:


Offline Nephi

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #273 on: July 02, 2013, 03:43:47 PM »

Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #274 on: July 02, 2013, 07:55:38 PM »


Romanian, painted on glass. A centuries-old folk-art tradition. The original is probably tiny, hence the simple detailing. The artist in this case made a boo-boo when tracing the draft: the saint is blessing with his left hand. Ooops.  :o :)
« Last Edit: July 02, 2013, 07:59:51 PM by LBK »
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Offline mike

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #275 on: July 03, 2013, 07:03:30 AM »
It was most likely a child's job.

Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #276 on: July 03, 2013, 08:04:22 AM »
It was most likely a child's job.

Not at all "most likely". The simple, naive style and wobbly draftsmanship could just as easily come from an inexperienced adult. I've seen many drawings and paintings over the years by adults with limited artistic ability which share the characteristics of this glass icon.
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Offline Nephi

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #277 on: July 04, 2013, 12:19:24 PM »


Haven't seen this kind of color scheme before with all the black and yellow

Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #278 on: July 04, 2013, 12:27:03 PM »
Was it painted in Pittsburgh? 
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Offline NicholasMyra

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #279 on: July 04, 2013, 12:35:35 PM »
Was it painted in Pittsburgh? 
I would have expected that comment from Achronos.  :D
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Offline Nephi

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #280 on: July 04, 2013, 12:43:19 PM »
Was it painted in Pittsburgh? 

Yeah, uh huh, you know what it is
Black and yellow, black and yellow
Black and yellow, black and yellow

Offline Justin Kissel

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #281 on: July 04, 2013, 12:45:24 PM »
Gold. Black and gold.
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Offline Deacon Lance

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #282 on: July 04, 2013, 01:32:34 PM »
Yinz guys don't know nothin.  If it was painted in the God-protected Holy City of Champions the vestments would be black and gold and the the mitre would be decorated with the tri-color hypocycloids representing the Holy Trinity.  Fer cryin out loud.
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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #283 on: July 04, 2013, 01:42:12 PM »
Hypocycloids?  Is that really what they call them?  I lived in the area for a year and never heard that term...I never would've imagined anyone there using the word "hypocycloid".  LOL.   
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Offline Deacon Lance

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #284 on: July 04, 2013, 01:53:45 PM »
Hypocycloids?  Is that really what they call them?  I lived in the area for a year and never heard that term...I never would've imagined anyone there using the word "hypocycloid".  LOL.   
That is the technical name for them according to US Steel who created the logo.  Most would call them the three thingies in the Steeler emblem.  :D
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Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #285 on: July 05, 2013, 01:45:23 AM »
How to ruin a perfectly good Kazanskaya:

It looks like one person painted the Mother of God, and very well, someone else painted the Child. Not sure what the second painter was on at the time ....

« Last Edit: July 05, 2013, 01:47:16 AM by LBK »
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Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #286 on: July 05, 2013, 02:08:52 AM »


Haven't seen this kind of color scheme before with all the black and yellow

It's no wonder you haven't. Black is the one color which is completely wrong as a background. It represents death, darkness, and evil, the polar opposite of the qualities which have led to the sanctification of the holy one depicted on the icon, in this case, St Nicholas of Myra. Black is used sparingly, and in specific circumstances, such as the abyss of Hades in icons of the Resurrection, and the darkness surrounding the bearded Kosmos figure holding a basket of scrolls at the bottom of Pentecost icons.

While gold is the ideal background, as, among other things, it represents purity, incorruption and the unfading Light which comes from God, other colors may be, and are, used, mainly for reasons such as the availability of pigments in a local area, and the impracticality in many cases of providing very large areas of gold-leafed background. Novgorod icons are known for their distinctive vermilion backgrounds, Pskov icons for their sage green, etc. Deep blue is a very common choice for icons painted on church walls, across many traditions.
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Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #287 on: July 16, 2013, 03:56:37 PM »

Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.
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Offline Justin Kissel

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #288 on: July 16, 2013, 04:12:54 PM »
That skyline is much too impressive to be Los Angeles...
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Offline biro

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #289 on: July 16, 2013, 04:18:48 PM »
Nice parks, though.
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Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #290 on: July 16, 2013, 04:19:39 PM »
Black represents death, darkness, and evil, the polar opposite of the qualities which have led to the sanctification of the holy one depicted on the icon, in this case, St Nicholas of Myra.

Which is why all clergy wear black, to show the evils of the bodies we are trapped in.
« Last Edit: July 16, 2013, 04:20:28 PM by Alveus Lacuna »

Offline augustin717

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #291 on: July 16, 2013, 04:57:34 PM »
Black represents death, darkness, and evil, the polar opposite of the qualities which have led to the sanctification of the holy one depicted on the icon, in this case, St Nicholas of Myra.

Which is why all clergy wear black, to show the evils of the bodies we are trapped in.
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Offline Nephi

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #292 on: July 16, 2013, 07:01:22 PM »
In that Los Angeles icon, who are the people in the center left and right? Looks like a Native American Mary on the left, but I may be wrong.

Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #293 on: July 16, 2013, 07:43:08 PM »



IIRC I commented on this image, or a segment of it, in the "Schlock icons" thread a while back.
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Offline mike

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #294 on: July 17, 2013, 06:40:09 PM »
IIRC I commented on this image, or a segment of it, in the "Schlock icons" thread a while back.

IIRC it was another one LA icon.

Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #295 on: July 17, 2013, 07:16:30 PM »
IIRC I commented on this image, or a segment of it, in the "Schlock icons" thread a while back.

IIRC it was another one LA icon.

Both paintings contain the same compositional elements, so I regard them as essentially the same.

Here's one of my posts on it:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,47878.msg865760.html#msg865760
« Last Edit: July 17, 2013, 07:17:22 PM by LBK »
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Offline Nephi

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #296 on: July 21, 2013, 10:04:31 PM »
Not really strange but "different," and I didn't want to start a new thread altogether. Anyway, I've seen icons of this rendition of Christ around the web before, and wondered if anyone knew any more about them? The hand position makes me think it's maybe OO, IDK.

« Last Edit: July 21, 2013, 10:05:08 PM by Nephi »

Offline NicholasMyra

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #297 on: July 21, 2013, 10:20:28 PM »


One of my favorite icons.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2013, 10:51:01 PM by NicholasMyra »
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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #298 on: July 21, 2013, 10:28:25 PM »
Not really strange but "different," and I didn't want to start a new thread altogether. Anyway, I've seen icons of this rendition of Christ around the web before, and wondered if anyone knew any more about them? The hand position makes me think it's maybe OO, IDK.

Yeah, that looks like a Coptic version of a Greek icon.  Only the hand position gives it away as Coptic (e.g., the vestments are definitely Greek and not Coptic).   
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Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #299 on: July 25, 2013, 04:44:25 PM »

I've never seen this one before.

It was entitled "Love".



It could be misleading to the casual onlooker, who doesn't know to read the letters identifying the Theotokos.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2013, 04:45:34 PM by LizaSymonenko »
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Offline Justin Kissel

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #300 on: July 25, 2013, 04:48:08 PM »
300th!
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Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #301 on: July 25, 2013, 04:49:19 PM »

^LOL!
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Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #302 on: July 25, 2013, 07:49:50 PM »

I've never seen this one before.

It was entitled "Love".



It could be misleading to the casual onlooker, who doesn't know to read the letters identifying the Theotokos.


It is a copy of a triptych panel by the early Renaissance master Cimabue, and it represents the assumption of the Virgin. Other painters of the era painted similar compositions, with some showing both Christ and the Virgin seated on the same heavenly throne.

Here is Cimabue's work:



In reply to Liza's comment, even if an observer could identify the woman as the Mother of God, this image is still, erm, problematic from the Orthodox POV. The bodily assumption of the Mother of God after her death is accepted and mentioned, but not elaborated upon, in hymns and teachings. It is a mystery, and one which iconography has never portrayed, unlike non-Orthodox religious art.

What Orthodox iconography does show, and rightly so, is Christ mystically appearing at His Mother's dormition. He is surrounded by a mandorla of uncreated light in which are numerous seraphim, and He is holding the soul of His Mother, as a babe in swaddling-clothes. This beautifully and eloquently expresses the incomparable honor of the Virgin - as she gave birth and nurtured her Son and God, the Life of all, so He received her soul to escort it to heaven Himself, she being more honorable and more glorious than the hosts on high, as the hymn says. Allowing a "mere" angel to take her soul just would not do. The hymns of the Dormition must surely be the loveliest and most evocative of all the feasts of the Mother of God.

In Cimabue's painting, and its variants, while the Virgin is in a supplicatory posture, she is still seated at the same level as Christ. In iconographic deesis (supplicatory) panels which show Christ enthroned at the center, flanked by the Virgin and St John the Baptist (and others, in many cases), only Christ is enthroned. The Mother of God is indeed the most powerful of intercessors, but she is not, and never can be, equal to God. She was graced with divinity in the fullest sense, but she is not divine herself.




« Last Edit: July 25, 2013, 07:58:31 PM by LBK »
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Offline mike

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #303 on: July 26, 2013, 03:29:06 PM »
And no stars ^.

Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #304 on: July 26, 2013, 03:35:05 PM »

... A definite no-no!
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Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #305 on: July 26, 2013, 09:32:50 PM »
Even if the stars were there, it wouldn't make this image acceptable as an icon. There is simply too much else wrong with it.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2013, 09:33:38 PM by LBK »
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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #306 on: July 26, 2013, 09:51:58 PM »
Even if the stars were there, it wouldn't make this image acceptable as an icon. There is simply too much else wrong with it.

Well, I like it.  I know you don't care.  :P  But I think it's a sweet image. 
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Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #307 on: July 26, 2013, 10:12:43 PM »
Even if the stars were there, it wouldn't make this image acceptable as an icon. There is simply too much else wrong with it.

Well, I like it.  I know you don't care.  :P  But I think it's a sweet image. 

My dear Mor, sentimentality and iconography don't mix.  ;)
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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #308 on: July 26, 2013, 10:17:37 PM »
Note that I deliberately avoided calling it an icon.  Don't I get brownie points at least for that?  :P
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Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #309 on: July 26, 2013, 10:21:07 PM »
Note that I deliberately avoided calling it an icon.  Don't I get brownie points at least for that?  :P

Glad you clarified.  :-*
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Offline Shanghaiski

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #310 on: July 27, 2013, 12:21:02 AM »
Note that I deliberately avoided calling it an icon.  Don't I get brownie points at least for that?  :P

You'll have to content yourself with brownie points in two natures.
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Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #311 on: July 29, 2013, 04:39:26 PM »

This icon isn't exactly "strange", however, I've never seen one like it.

What is the Mother of God holding?


Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.
—St. Isaac of Syria

Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #312 on: July 29, 2013, 07:28:57 PM »
It looks like a chalice. Here is another version of it, which I find disturbing because of the Child's portrayal - in profile, and as a generic chubby babe, not as the all-knowing God before the Ages, as the kontakion of the Nativity proclaims:

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Offline LBK

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #313 on: July 30, 2013, 05:45:55 AM »
For those who can't see the image I posted, here's the same one from another site:

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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Strange icons
« Reply #314 on: July 30, 2013, 09:27:12 AM »
It looks like a chalice. Here is another version of it, which I find disturbing because of the Child's portrayal - in profile, and as a generic chubby babe, not as the all-knowing God before the Ages, as the kontakion of the Nativity proclaims:

Clearly, LBK, you're a little too judgmental on this one.  Our little Lord doesn't look like a generic chubby babe, those are cuter in real life.  This is clearly a sick baby being taken care of by our Lady, who doesn't seem to be able to get him to eat, take his medicine, etc.  Give him a chance to recover, geez.   ::)  :P 

Actually, they don't even look related.  If they looked like mother and son but he was a little more chubby, I wouldn't mind it so much (I know, my taste doesn't matter), but it bothers me that the child bears no resemblance to the mother.  I've never felt that way about an otherwise normal-looking icon before.  He looks like the Christological equivalent of Grumpy Cat.
"Do not tempt the Mor thy Mod."

Mor no longer posts on OCNet.  He follows threads, posts his responses daily, occasionally starts threads, and responds to private messages when and as he wants.  But he really isn't around anymore.