Icon: Last Judgment

Icon: Last Judgment
(click image to zoom-in)
Painting, Tempera on panel and gilding, 163x118 cm
Origin: Russia, First half of the 16th century

The Last Judgment is the end of the world, that final weighing in the balance which, according to the Christian religion, no man can avoid. In obviously didactic terms, the artist shows us how the righteous will be allowed to enter Paradise - on the left - and sinners will go to Hell. Christ alone is the Judge, but by him stand the Virgin, John the Evangelist and the apostles.

In this very decorative icon there is a strong sense of the traditions of the Novgorod school. The composition is built up of arching lines and circles and is dominated by constrasting colour combinations of green and red, ochre and gold. Some details, however, such as the faces, the varied proportions of the figures, and the overloaded lower part of the composition, indicate that the icon may have been the work of an artist from the northern part of the Novgorod lands along the River Dvina.

Personage: Christ
Source of entry: State Hermitage Expedition, Arkhangelsk Region, 1960
School: Novgorod
Theme: The Bible and Christianity

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