Astonishing Geometric Patterned Art by Russian Icon Painters

Recently I featured carved icons by Russian Rashid and Inessa Azbuhanov. Also on their website, here, there is a section entitled Avante Garde 21st Century Art (I am assuming that the Google translator is accurate here). I imagine that the artists describe them in this way because they do not think of them as works of sacred art at all. I think that these are worth looking at in the context of sacred art. What I find on their site are some geometric patterns that I would happily see as the basis for tiled floors, for example, in churches.

The artists have given each one a title which assigns an allegorical meaning to them. I don’t understand the basis of these and without wishing to undermine any significance that they see in them, we are entitled to see them in the light of traditional numerical symbolism and use them in the light of this. So any shapes with octagonal symmetry, for example, could be used in a sanctuary floor given the symbolism of Christ as the ‘eighth day’ of Creation. In some ways they remind me of traditional Romanesque, western patterns, but there are also elements that I have not seen elsewhere before.

David Clayton

By

David is an Englishman living in New Hampshire, USA. He is an artist, teacher, published writer and broadcaster who holds a permanent post as Artist-in-Residence and Lecturer in Liberal Arts at the Thomas More College of Liberal Arts. The Way of Beauty program, which is offered at TMC, focuses on the link between Catholic culture, with a special emphasis on art, and the liturgy. David was received into the Church in London in 1993. Visit the Way of Beauty blog at thewayofbeauty.org.

Subscribe to CE
(It's free)

Go to Catholic Exchange homepage

MENU