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IMC 2019: Sessions

Session 303: Byzantine Influences in Medieval Church Art in Eastern and Southeastern Europe

Monday 1 July 2019, 16.30-18.00

Moderator/Chair:Mihailo Popović, Institut für Mittelalterforschung, Abteilung Byzanzforschung, Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Wien
Paper 303-aIncarnation and Salvation: The Prophets in the Dome of St George at Pološko
(Language: English)
Ana Popova, Independent Scholar, London
Index terms: Art History - Painting, Byzantine Studies
Paper 303-bIs It Really Unusual to See Figural Stone Relief Decoration on the Façades of St Demetrios in Vladimir?
(Language: English)
Özlem Eren, Department of Art History, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Index terms: Architecture - Religious, Art History - Sculpture, Byzantine Studies, Pagan Religions

Paper -a:
The fresco painting of St George at Pološko reflects the cult of the Virgin in the 14th century as well as the funerary character of the church. This paper focuses on the eight prophets depicted in the drum whose attributes (and the quotations written on their scrolls) summarise the most important themes of Christian philosophy. With their symbols and inscribed scrolls the prophets glorify not only the role of the Mother of God in the mystery of the Incarnation and the Salvation but also emphasise the suffering of Christ and his Resurrection announcing at the same time the End Times and the Last Judgement.

Paper -b:
Understanding the Russian medieval identity is the key to the seemingly puzzling presence of relief carvings on the façades of the 12th-century Church of St Dmitry in Vladimir-Sudal Principality of Rus'. The building material of the Vladimir-Suzdal churches is predominantly white-stone, not brick or opus-mixtum. The presence of reliefs of animal and human figures on the façades of St. Demetrios appears in contradiction to the Byzantine model of Eastern Orthodox churches. Pagan beliefs did not completely disappear among the Slavs even after the conversion to Christianity, and most of them had dual-religions. The Slavic pagan 'Zbruch' idol in the context of an 'empire model' can help in the understanding of the dual pagan and Christian symbolism.