четвъртък, 16 април 2009 г.

Great and Holy Thursday


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четвъртък, 26 март 2009 г.

Annunciation 12 c Sinai


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петък, 6 март 2009 г.

Prophet Ilia. Veliko Tarnovo, XIII c


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събота, 28 февруари 2009 г.

St Johns Head Russian 17 c


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сряда, 18 февруари 2009 г.

StSt Cyril and Methodius Rome XI c


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неделя, 8 февруари 2009 г.

Ceramic icon of St. Theodore Stratilates



One of the few ceramic icons in existence, dated to ca. 900, shows St. Theodore. It was found 1909 near Preslav, Bulgaria. (now in National Archaeological Museum, Sofia).


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петък, 30 януари 2009 г.

Palermo mosaic 12 c

Synaxis of the Three Hierarchs: Basil the Great, Gregory the Theologian and John Chrysostom: During the eleventh century, disputes raged in Constantinople about which of the three hierarchs was the greatest. Some preferred St Basil, others honored St Gregory the Theologian, while a third group exalted St John Chrysostom. Dissension among Christians increased. Some called themselves Basilians, others referred to themselves as Gregorians, and others as Johnites. By the will of God, the three hierarchs appeared to St John the Bishop of Euchaita in the year 1084, and said that they were equal before God. "There are no divisions among us, and no opposition to one another." They ordered that the disputes should stop, and that their common commemoration should be celebrated on a single day. Bishop John chose January 30 for their joint Feast, thus ending the controversy and restoring peace.

The Palatine Chapel (or Cappella Palatina) is part of the Palazzo dei Normanni (or Palazzo Reale) in Palermo. It was the private chapel of Roger II, who also built Cefalù cathedral. The stunning mosaics include scenes from the Old Testament of the Bible, events from the lives of Saints Peter and Paul, and other saints. Unfortunately the central image of Christ over the altar, and other mosaics in the apse were hidden behind scaffolding and sheeting on this visit, on account of restoration work. There is also extensive cosmati flooring and geometric inlay. The wall outside the chapel in covered in 19th century mosaics, in fascinating contrast to the Byzantine examples inside. The artists responsible for the chapels mosaics are thought to be the same that created those at La Martorana. Many of the biblical scenes in the Palatine Chapel are also featured at Monreale.


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неделя, 18 януари 2009 г.

St Athanasius Plovdiv 16-17 c

St Athanasius took part in the First Ecumenical Council when he was still a deacon. He surpassed everyone there in his zeal to uphold the teaching that Christ is consubstantial (homoousios) with the Father, and not merely a creature, as the Arians proclaimed.
This radiant beacon of Orthodoxy spent most of his life in exile from his See, because of the plotting of his enemies. He returned to his flock as he was approaching the end of his life. Like an evening star, he illumined the Orthodox faithful with his words for a little while, then reposed in 373.


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вторник, 6 януари 2009 г.

Theophany. Daphne, 11 c


Мозаика в парусе церкви Успения в Дафни. Наиболее ярким и завершенным проявлением стиля конца XI столетия стали мозаики церкви Успения Богоматери в Дафни, близ Афин, представляющие уникальное явление в истории византийского искусства. Храм декорирован отчасти по классической схеме: в куполе — Пантократор с шестнадцатью пророками в простенках барабана, в апсиде — Богоматерь с поклоняющимися пророками. Однако большое количество праздничных сцен занимают здесь не только тромпы и люнеты, но располагаются даже на плоских поверхностях стен.
Мозаики Дафни создают ощущение праздничности, незамутненного спокойствия и вселенской гармонии. Из живописи полностью исчезают какие бы то ни было мрачные тона, а евангельские образы исполняются поэтической красоты (см. композицию того же ансамбля «Явление ангела Иоакиму»). Даже в сценах страстей нет и намека на страсти и пафос страдания и жертвы. В этот мир благородной и нейтральной красоты не вмещаются кровь, боль и терновый венец Распятия.
В мозаиках Дафни нарастают повествовательные тенденции: сцен становится больше, в них появляются пейзаж, элементы архитектуры, большее внимание уделено сюжету. Однако главным побуждением мастера отнюдь не является тяга к выраженному развитию рассказа. Тщательно отобранные детали, идеальный характер действия, отсутствие каких бы то ни было эмоций и, тем более, экспрессии и духовного напряжения фиксируют мир не как процесс, а как состояние. Художника скорее интересует не что происходит, а как происходит.
В Дафни получили развитие композиционные принципы византийской живописи. Композиции мозаик очень свободны, исполнены широкого дыхания не занятого формами пространства. Характерна не просто статуарность, но идеальная завершенная округлость объемов, уподобляющая фигуры росписи прекрасной круглой скульптуре. Изменилось соотношение фигур между собою и с пространством: персонажи изображены в самых разных ракурсах и разворотах, обилие трехчетвертных и профильных абрисов создает постоянное движение объемов из глубины наружу. Объемные, но легкие ткани демонстрируют пластику тел и одновременно отстают от поверхности, как бы слегка отдуваемые ветром.
В ликах поразительны особая холодноватая красота, безмятежность, бесконечное удаление от мира страстей и эмоций. Даже миловидные нежные типы (Богоматерь, ангелы) полностью отвлечены от душевной умилительности. Ощущение идеального бесстрастия уподобляет образ человека и Богочеловека бесстрастию идеально устроенного и упорядоченного космоса.
Цветовая палитра приобретает особую воздушность и внутреннее сияние. Необыкновенное богатство цветовых переливов, мгновенно преображающих основной тон, вызывает ощущение колеблющейся поверхности тканей. Все цвета взяты в едином, холодновато-серебристом ключе с преобладанием пепельных, серебристых, голубых, холодных розовых и сияющих сапфировых оттенков. Даже золотая смальта фонов выглядит неплотной и прозрачной благодаря светлому, чуть зеленоватому оттенку золота.

Theophany is the Feast which reveals the Most Holy Trinity to the world through the Baptism of the Lord (Mt.3:13-17; Mark 1:9-11; Luke 3:21-22). God the Father spoke from Heaven about the Son, the Son was baptized by the St John the Forerunner, and the Holy Spirit descended upon the Son in the form of a dove. From ancient times this Feast was called the Day of Illumination and the Feast of Lights, since God is Light and has appeared to illumine "those who sat in darkness," and "in the region of the shadow of death" (Mt.4:16), and to save the fallen race of mankind by grace. In the ancient Church it was the custom to baptize catechumens at the Vespers of Theophany, so that Baptism also is revealed as the spiritual illumination of mankind. The origin of the Feast of Theophany goes back to Apostolic times, and it is mentioned in The Apostolic Constitutions (Book V:13). From the second century we have the testimony of St Clement of Alexandria concerning the celebration of the Baptism of the Lord, and the night vigil before this Feast. There is a third century dialogue about the services for Theophany between the holy martyr Hippolytus and St Gregory the Wonderworker. In the following centuries, from the fourth to ninth century, all the great Fathers of the Church: Gregory the Theologian, John Chrysostom, Ambrose of Milan, John of Damascus, commented on the Feast of Theophany. The monks Joseph the Studite, Theophanes and Byzantios composed much liturgical music for this Feast, which is sung at Orthodox services even today. St John of Damascus said that the Lord was baptized, not because He Himself had need for cleansing, but "to bury human sin by water," to fulfill the Law, to reveal the mystery of the Holy Trinity, and finally, to sanctify "the nature of water" and to offer us the form and example of Baptism. On the Feast of the Baptism of Christ, the Holy Church proclaims our faith in the most sublime mystery, incomprehensible to human intellect, of one God in three Persons. It teaches us to confess and glorify the Holy Trinity, one in Essence and Indivisible. It exposes and overthrows the errors of ancient teachings which attempted to explain the Creator of the world by reason, and in human terms. The Church shows the necessity of Baptism for believers in Christ, and it inspires us with a sense of deep gratitude for the illumination and purification of our sinful nature. The Church teaches that our salvation and cleansing from sin is possible only by the power of the grace of the Holy Spirit, therefore it is necessary to preserve worthily these gifts of the grace of holy Baptism, keeping clean this priceless garb, for "As many as have been baptized into Christ, have put on Christ" (Gal 3:27). On the day of Theophany, all foods are permitted, even if the Feast falls on a Wednesday or Friday.


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петък, 26 декември 2008 г.

The Nativity. Sinai, 7 c


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четвъртък, 18 декември 2008 г.

Daniel and the Lions. Rome, 2-3 c


Fresco at the Catacomb of Saints Marcellinus and Peter - Rome, Via Labicana... So, too, the story of Daniel in the Lion's Den: the wicked authorities persecuting the innocent believers whose only power was their faith in God and his promise to His people... Even the orant pose that Daniel assumes links his persecution and salvation to those of the Christians.

(http://campus.belmont.edu/honors/catacombs/catacombs.htm)


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събота, 6 декември 2008 г.

Ss. Paul, Peter, Nicholas, and John Chrysostomos 7 c

40 x 13 cm. Encaustic. Sinai.
These two outer leaves of a triptych are joined by a wooden strip at the top. The Apostles reverse the colors of their tunics and mantles; Paul carries a book, and Peter a scroll, possibly a reference to the traditio legis. Bishops Nicholas and John wear the omophorion and carry books.


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