|Andrei Rublev, Trinity, c.1400|
One of my favorite forms of art is that of Russian Iconography. I was only familiar and in love with the exquisite detail of their small oil paintings on wood (an example shown above). My relationship grew and my appreciation deepened last week when I was introduced to a new exhibition of work at the Russian Art Museum. Just as exquisite in miniature detail, the imageries were not painted, but instead cast in copper alloys such as brass and bronze. A few were then decorated with gilding and enamel.
While I learned about the history of Russia back then and the people who created these wonders, I also caught a glimpse of Artists' perspectives on creating their works. Not only did they embellish the fronts of a casted cross with detail and story, so they also paid attention to the backside with complimentary imagery. I loved being able to see some casts where both sides were exposed to me! And then knowing this unseen side existed, I loved the mystery to other casts throughout the exhibition where the backside was hidden.
This has gotten me thinking. As I have recently come across (in combining my studios) works in progress (specifically tri-fold paintings) where the story could so easily be suggested on the outside of the piece - complimenting what is going on within. I am eager to explore my works in progress further (perhaps this idea is what was needed for me to move a work in progress to completion?!) with what I have witnessed and learned from these 18th-20th century artists (thank you!). I look forward to sharing with you what comes about from this recent influence.......