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Artifacts; Original Drawings, Paintings, Icons, Calligraphy;
The painted areas are splotchy; this is particularly true of the face and hands. This object was both dry and damp cleaned according to directions from a conservation expert when it was received at Clemens Library.
This original work is a rectangular, metal-clad wood panel with painted features depicting Jesus Christ Pantocrator (Lord of all). Christ is shown half-length, blessing and teaching. An embossed silver and gold colored riza covers the entire panel except for face and hands of Jesus Christ, which are painted with a dramatic character. Christ’s right hand is raised in a typically Russian benediction gesture. His left hand supports a large, open book, embossed with legible Russian text. Wreathing Christ’s head is a radiant halo embossed with Greek initials abbreviating a reference to “the One who is” (see Exodus 3:14), indicating that Christ is God. (The abbreviation identifying the figure as Christ is lacking in this icon.) The riza is in two parts: 1) radiant halo; 2) garment, book and patterned border with inscription in Russian on lower edge.
There is a metal hanger nailed to fabric-covered back.
Originally, metal coverings were created to protect and embellish fully painted icon panels with openings cut only for selected key features, like faces and hands. However, this panel appears to be typical of the evolution of the craft: only those features that show through the openings cut in the riza have been painted, not the entire panel.