1 December 2011
1670s, OKLAD STAMPED WITH ALDERMAN'S MARK A.O.P IN CYRILLIC, MOSCOW, 1789
31.5 by 26 cm.
The Hodegetria Mother of God, the most solemn and severe iconographic type, is distinguished by the peculiarity of the full face portrayal of the benedictory Infant Christ.
Judging from the professional techniques used to paint the faces, the economy of form, the palette and the gilding on the background and borders of the icon, we may be sure that it was painted in Moscow in the latter half of the 17th century. The upper wooden brace at the back of the icon has a barely legible 17th century cursive inscription.
At the end of the 18th century, a sumptuous silver oklad was commissioned for the icon, which combines all the best techniques and qualities of the Moscow school of master silversmiths working at that time. The oklad ornamentation in highrelief repoussé on a stippled background, comprises garlanded heads of Cherubim and Seraphim and two flying angels support an appliqué crown decorated with gemstones.
Thus, the icon of the “Mother of God of Smolensk” is a fine example of Moscow icon painting in the second half of the 17th century and the silver oklad, made for the icon a hundred years later, enhances the artistic merit of this revered image.
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.