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Religious Icons: Anticipating the Holiday Season

Arising from the Russian and Ukranian Orthodox worlds are icons – conventional religious images typically painted on small wooden panels and framed with metal sand castings. These icons carry rich histories and intricate religious symbolism. Often portraits or of scenes from the Bible, these ornate paintings remain faithful to the stories of Christ, the Virgin Mary and the saints.

A fine collection of 27 antique religious icons will be featured in an upcoming Jasper52 sale on Sunday, Nov. 6. Below are some highlights:

Russian icon of Christ Pantocrator

Dating to the 1890s and made using egg tempera and zinc on wood with silver basma, a Moscow hallmark. 

Russian icon, ‘Christ Pantocrator,’ Moscow, circa 1890. Estimate: $1,200-$1,500

Russian icon, ‘Christ Pantocrator,’ Moscow, circa 1890. Estimate: $1,200-$1,500

 

Icon of St. Nicholas of Myra

Done in egg tempera and gesso with brass oklad, this provincial central Russia icon dates to the 1880s.

‘Nicholas of Myra,’ central Russia, circa 1880. Estimate: $325-$425

‘Nicholas of Myra,’ central Russia, circa 1880. Estimate: $325-$425

 

Russian Icon Elevation of the True Cross

This depiction of St. Elena and St. Constantine the presenting the True Cross dates to the 1860s. Elevation of the Holy Cross is one of the Great Feasts of the Orthodox Church, celebrated on September 14.

‘Saints Elena and Constantine presenting the True Cross,’ central Russia, circa 1860. Estimate: $400-$600

‘Saints Elena and Constantine presenting the True Cross,’ central Russia, circa 1860. Estimate: $400-$600

 

Russian Icon Savior of Smolensk

This icon shows Christ with his right hand raised in a blessing gesture and his left hand holding a Gospel book. Flanking Him are the Virgin Mary and St. John the Baptist; kneeling in prayer at His feet are St. Sergius of Radonezh and the Venerable Barlaam of Khutyn.

‘Savior of Smolensk,’ egg tempera and and gesso on wood with silver-plated brass oklad, central Russia, circa 1880. Estimate: $600-$800

‘Savior of Smolensk,’ egg tempera and and gesso on wood with silver-plated brass oklad, central Russia, circa 1880. Estimate: $600-$800

 

Our Lady of Kazan

Our Lady of Kazan, aka Kazanskay Mother of God, was a holy icon of the highest stature within the Russian Orthodox Church, representing the Virgin Mary as the protector and patroness of the city of Kazan, and a palladium of all of Russia. This fine example done in egg tempera and gesso with silvered oklad dates to the 1880s.

‘Our Lady of Kazan,’ egg tempera and and gesso on wood with silvered oklad, circa 1880. Estimate: $600-$800

‘Our Lady of Kazan,’ egg tempera and and gesso on wood with silvered oklad, circa 1880. Estimate: $600-$800

See the full Religious Icons auction this week and stay tuned for more unique finds.