MacDougall Auctions 2-3 December 2009

2 December 2009

Artist Index / Full Catalogue




43 by 34 cm.
30,000-40,000 pounds

This icon of the Last Judgement has very detailed iconography of the type that appears on small devotional icons popular in Old Believers' circles and which have numerous explanatory inscriptions on the borders. The didactic nature of the composition, with its pronounced eschatological themes of punishment for sins and reward for the righteous, held particular doctrinal relevance in Old Believers' communities (especially the priestless denominations). The detailed quotes accompanying such images reflect the Old Believers' love for the written word. The painting, despite abrasions in the upper layers, is notable for its fine and elaborate details and is reminiscent of the Yaroslavl regional style, particularly of the intricate art from the town of Romanov. However, the calligraphic drawing and purity of colours also suggest the influence of 16th century Novgorodian art, which is characteristic of Old Believers' painting overall; therefore, the possibility cannot be excluded that the icon originated from one of the Novgorodian artistic centres. The fine painting style and early date make this piece particularly unique and valuable.

Notes on symbols:
* Indicates 5% Import Duty Charge applies.
Ω Indicates 20% Import Duty Charge applies.
§ Indicates Artist's Resale Right applies.
† Indicates Standard VAT scheme applies, and the rate of 20% VAT will be charged on both hammer price and premium.