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HOME : Russian Icons : Russian Icons : Nine-Part Icon
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Nine-Part Icon - PF.5178
Origin: Russia
Circa: 1750 AD to 1900 AD
Dimensions: 21" (53.3cm) high x 17.25" (43.8cm) wide
Collection: Russian Icons
Medium: Oil on Wood Panel

Location: United States
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In the center of this remarkable icon, the face of Christ looks upon us with loving compassion, while two angels peer over His nimbus. Beginning upper left clockwise, the Virgin Mary sings a liturgy to a gathering of local saints, with a church and bell tower in the distance. Christ's baptism by St. John the Forerunner is watched over by three angels, two of whom hold clothing. The Dormition, or 'falling asleep' of the Virgin Mary is next. She lies on a bed surrounded by saints and angels, seen at the moment of the death of her earthly body and the ascension of her soul. She is pictured below holding the infant Jesus, depicted in a manner similar to late Byzantine iconography. The Virgin is next seen holding the baby Jesus in an attractive indoor setting, while Joseph kneels before them. Two angels and a saint appear on an open ground bearing the inscription, "the birth of God is a denunciation of all that is evil." The head of St. John the Baptist on a platter is graphically depicted, recalling the whim of Salome in demanding his death. Above, the Virgin and Child are shown in a manner different from the opposite panel; her clothing is just as sumptuous, though here she wears a crown. Vivid use of color with brilliant reds and lavender, along with more muted shades of rose and brown, contribute to the unusual aspect of the scenes--resulting in a work of simple beauty and sophisticated ornamentation. - (PF.5178)


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