AN ICON 'THE HOLY TRINITY OF THE NEW TESTAMENT (FATHERLAND); WITH SAINTS STANDING AND SAINTS IN THE FIELDS Mstera (?), Vladimir region, (Russia), first third of the 19th century
wood, gesso, gold leaf, tempera 33.5 x 28.7 cm Condition: the icon has been partially restored, some fragmentary losses of the paint layer. However, this later intervention does not, on the whole, distort the «high» aesthetics of the icon’s image, namely the refined miniature painting, elongated proportions of the figures, the vivid colour palette, and the masterly execution of the personages. In Russia icons with a similar iconography began to appear in the mid-16th century. Having passed a thorny path of condemnation and recognition of this image, these icons, along with traditional iconographic versions, were allowed to be used in icon painting to reveal the dogmatic meaning of biblical texts. Here a cloudy background in Glory depicts the Holy Trinity - God the Father , God the Son and the Holy Spirit. There are icons of the Holy Trinity where God the Father is depicted as the Elder, Saviour Emmanuel, i.e. the Saviour, is shown as a young man, and above them the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove. This image is called the Fatherland. On the sides of the Glory are the ends of a bright red diamond with the symbols of the four Evangelists. Above are the Archangels led by St Michael. The figures of the Virgin Mary and St John the Baptist turn to the Trinity in prayer.