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HOME : Russian Icons : Russian Icons : Christ Pantocrator
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Christ Pantocrator - PF.5686
Origin: Russia
Circa: 18 th Century AD to 19 th Century AD
Dimensions: 8.75" (22.2cm) high
Collection: Russian Icons
Medium: Oklad/Oil on Wood

Additional Information: Sold

Location: United States
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Inseparable from the liturgical tradition, religious art is seen by Orthodox Christians as a form of pictorial confession of faith and a channel of religious experience. Because the icons provide a direct personal contact with the holy persons represented on them, these images should be objects of veneration, in either a public or private setting, and were even believed to have the ability to heal.

The oil painting of this icon is extremely realistic. However, only the head and hands of Christ have been painted, the rest of this extraordinary work is encased in a brass oklad. A repoussee technique in high relief has been utilized to produce the folds and curves of his drapery and the bulk of the open book he holds, probably the Bible. The metal itself has also been engraved to depict the floral pattern of his outer robe, the sun burst luminescence that radiates from around his head, and the Cyrillic text of the open pages. The borders of the oklad have also been elaborated by an engraved abstract motif, including a line of text inscribed at the bottom center. To represent Christ’s halo, an additional engraved oklad with pointed, crystalline-tiered edges has been attached to the icon with three brass tacks. The metal not only imitates the elegance of gold, but also contrasts and emphasizes the softness of the painted flesh. Here, Christ raises his right hand in a sign of benediction while showing us the testament of his own divinity and humanity. Like many icon paintings, this work attempts to combine the familiar and the divine into one. He is mortal, like us; yet holy, worthy of our adoration and veneration.
- (PF.5686)


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