Author Topic: Iconographic tradition of the Theotokos  (Read 2925 times)

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Offline LBK

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Re: Iconographic tradition of the Theotokos
« Reply #45 on: October 25, 2013, 07:32:58 AM »
What about this?  I have seen the Burning Bush icon with Moses as a young man taking his sandals off, but not one where the Theotokos and Christ are the bush. 


The Burning Bush bearing the figure of the Mother of God and Child is actually quite common. A better way of painting this detail is to have painted it in a translucent monochrome style, to reflect that the Bush is a prefiguration of the Virgin conceiving and bearing God Incarnate, the Fire of Divinity which not only did not consume her, but preserved her virginity.

Here is an example:



Irrespective of how the Virgin and Child are painted ("full-color" vs translucent to suggest prefiguration and invisibility), the iconographic type should be that of the Of the Sign icons, which are the most direct in expressing the mystery of the Incarnation, a visual equivalent of the clarity of Isaiah 7:14 : Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Emmanuel.

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Offline hecma925

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Re: Iconographic tradition of the Theotokos
« Reply #46 on: October 25, 2013, 07:39:15 AM »
http://www.conventofsaintelizabeth.org/bigpic.html?byzicons/print/images-copyright/m/pr-moses-bush.jpg

So, painting them the same shade as the fire is good or not-so-good?
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Offline LBK

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Re: Iconographic tradition of the Theotokos
« Reply #47 on: October 25, 2013, 07:44:29 AM »
http://www.conventofsaintelizabeth.org/bigpic.html?byzicons/print/images-copyright/m/pr-moses-bush.jpg

So, painting them the same shade as the fire is good or not-so-good?

Good.  :) It follows the prefiguration principle I described earlier. I've seen examples of these as well.
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Offline hecma925

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Re: Iconographic tradition of the Theotokos
« Reply #48 on: October 25, 2013, 09:03:11 AM »
Kaluga Icon of the Mother of God
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Offline mike

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Re: Iconographic tradition of the Theotokos
« Reply #49 on: October 25, 2013, 09:04:28 AM »
Poorly painted.
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Offline LBK

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Re: Iconographic tradition of the Theotokos
« Reply #50 on: October 25, 2013, 09:10:35 AM »
Kaluga Icon of the Mother of God


A Roman Catholic image which found its way into Orthodox regions, in the same way as have the Joy of Joys, Ostrobramskaya, and Akhtirskaya. Some attempt has been made to make it conform more closely to Orthodox iconographic tradition, but the Child is absent, and the Virgin's hair is clearly visible.
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Offline sheenj

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Re: Iconographic tradition of the Theotokos
« Reply #51 on: October 25, 2013, 09:23:06 AM »
What about the Multiplier of Wheat icons? They don't show Christ.


Offline LBK

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Re: Iconographic tradition of the Theotokos
« Reply #52 on: October 25, 2013, 09:35:05 AM »
What about the Multiplier of Wheat icons? They don't show Christ.



Not only is Christ absent, but the Mother of God is shown in a blaze of uncreated light.

From the "Canonical icons" thread:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,17565.msg305661.html#msg305661

The Multiplier of Wheat shows the Mother of God surrounded by a mandorla, an oval motif of rays and stars which represents the uncreated light and glory of God. This is a major error in iconography, as the Virgin, while, of course, partaking of the glory and life of God, is not divine herself. She does not generate this light. Christ alone may be depicted in this light, such as in icons of Christ in Majesty (Christ enthroned, surrounded by the bodiless hosts), the Transfiguration, the Dormition of His mother (where He is seen holding her soul in the form of a babe in swaddling clothes, surely one of the loveliest of iconographic motifs, and truly loaded with theological meaning), and in icons of the Mother of God of the Sign, where He, as Christ Emmanuel, is surrounded by a circular mandorla over His mother's body as she holds her arms raised in supplication. By contrast, a mandorla is often seen in western images (paintings and statues) of the Virgin, notably in Our Lady of Guadelupe.[/i][/color]

The post I linked to also has something to say about other, similar images, and how they can be made to conform more closely with Orthodox teachings and proper iconographic tradition.

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