The Power of Icons (pdf). By Simon Morsink (Jan Morsink Ikonen), The Netherlands.
"The Power of Icons", Russian and Greek Icons, 15th-19th Century : 25 x 31 cm (10 x 12 in), hard cover, 184 pages, 53 plates. By Simon Morsink, leading dealer in Russian and Greek icons, with Victoria van Aalst, Eva Haustein (Director Ikonen Museum Recklinghausen), Phaidra Kalafatis (Curator Byzantine Museum Athens), Heinz Skrobucha, and Edmond Voordeckers. Richly illustrated, clear and interesting text about iconography and icon history. Beautiful plates with outstanding descriptions in the catalog section. Click image to see the front cover plate of the book. The book can be purchased at Amazon.com or at any good bookstore (ISBN number 90-5349-590-8).
18 May 2007 : Icons Explained has a NEW BLOG http://Icons-Explained.blogspot.comThe 'original' Blog Company (the name is Blogger) was purchased by Google. The staff was retained and with the more abundant financial means "Blogger" made some great improvements. Posting to the new blog is much easier now. That being the case, the posts of the (old) IconsExplained blog were transfered to the (new) Icons-Explained blog. Following it the old blog was closed. You will find the link to the (new) blog on the Welcome Page. INVITATION : Post your comments and suggestions on this blog!
20 March 2007 : Iconographers' Index-Imagebase New Sites - PreviewThe (new) Preview page is a temporary page. It permits viewing new sites that are in the process of being added to the large Iconographers' Index-Imagebase. The page can be accessed in the website menu and in the Intro page menu.
23 December 2006 : Byzantine Icons by Subject - Complete Revision of Gallery-ImagebaseThe New Gallery-Imagebase has been completely revised. The existing Galleries are being maintained "as is".
26 November 2006 : Byzantine Icons by Subject - New AdditionA New, Expandable and Sortable, Gallery-Imagebase has been added. The existing Galleries will be maintained "as is".
15 October 2006 : Contemporary Byzantine Icons - New (New) PageHaving been the first to say that the Living Iconography Tradition is terminated, that it is next to impossible to fully recuperate the Iconography Canon, that the only way to get back onto the right path is to re-assimilate byzantine painting, several Leading Iconography Experts give their view on Hand-Painting of Byzantine Icons.
23 September 2006 : Contemporary Byzantine Icons - New PageOn the new page Introduction and Index-Imagebase Entry Point are combined, individual subjects are more clearly identified, and a new section on Exhibitions has been added.
15 September 2006 - The Syrian Orthodox Christian Digest
On its Medieval-Byzantine-Icons page, Icons Explained.com has some beautiful icon images from Syria. Which is why, when I stumbled on Shroro - The Syrian Orthodox Christian Digest, I clicked the link. From what I could see, the e-magazine seems to publish a range of interesting articles. Perhaps also, they are willing to share with us some Syriac icons? (By the way, in the Syrian Aramaic language, Shroro means "the Truth".)
19 August 2006 - Greek Police hunt for stolen icon - BBC News, Athens
8 August 2006 : Icons Explained Welcome Page - Hacked and RecoveredAbout a year ago a new project was explored for which a script was needed. The project was abandoned, but not all files were removed. Hackers found a security hole in the script through which they were able to hack into the Icons Explained account (at the server). All redundant files were removed, the password was reset, and the page was republished. This solved the problem. I apologize for the inconvenience this may have caused, and thank you for your understanding and patience.
Mother Of God, The Theotokos, Weeps In Cyprus - by Archimandrite Nektarios Serfes
Iconographers of the Twentieth Century (pdf) - Article by Aidan Hart (Theologian, Iconographer), UK.
The tradition of religious painting in Greece - Article by Anna Hatziyannaki, Greece.
1 July 2006 : Iconographers' Index-Imagebase Cleaned Up and ExpandedSix new entries have been added, and dead links were marked INVALID. For the most part they were left in place as some may be invalid only temporarily. Only the 'All-in-One' page was expanded and cleaned, while the 3-Part frames-based page was disabled.
1 July 2006 : Medieval Byzantine Icons page - ExpandedThe contents of the Exhibitions & Collections web page has been moved over to the Medieval Byzantine Icons page into a new Chapter carrying the same title (Exhibitions & Collections). Likewise, links to about twenty major sites on Frescoes and Mosaics have been grouped together into a new Chapter solely devoted to Frescoes & Mosaics. In the Links Menu and Floating Menu, look for Exhibitions & Collections and Frescoes & Mosaics (FM Chapter). Finally, all links on the page have been updated.
18 May 2006 : Articles and BooksOver the past year some interesting articles and books were spotted and subsequently added to pertinent sections of this site. The News Items will be posted to this page as well (the "Articles and Books" page, started in May 2006, .
5 May 2006 : Welcome Page rewrittenDuring the past few months :
- the Icons Explained Welcome Page was rewritten
- an Overview of Contents page was written for each of the six chapters (see Navigation Menu)
- a Navigation Tutorial* was added (to the Welcome Page)
- the Sitemap (Homepage/Sitemap) was updated
* the Navigation Tutorial can also be found in the site's Navigation Menu under (6) Miscellanoues Pages, Section 2
25 April 2006 - Remains of Russian painter found in monastery. Article by Andrew Osborn, Moscow
( http://www.rusnet.nl/news/2006/04/25/culture01.shtml )
31 October 2005 :
- Announcing Russian Icon Tour 2006
- Icons Explained pages with Google AdSense program & ads, see Welcome Page, for example
12 September 2005 : Virgin of the SignEven though considered an icon of the type "Orans", a separate page was made for the Mother of God of the Sign, one of the most venerated icons in Russia. This was prompted when showing the wonderful icon of the Mother of God of the Sign by Olga Kirichenko (Kiricenko). The page can be found in the menus under Byzantine Icons by Subject - Icon Types - Marian Icons - Virgin Orans.
25 August 2005 : SiteSearchSince Google SiteSearch finally has been understood as it must have been intended, the SiteSearch page was re-written in the form of a tutorial. When using it in combination with the IE Find utility, any word or image can be found now quickly and easily, provided it's there.
21 August 2005 : AdjustmentsThe site is best viewed in Internet Explorer with screen resolution of 1024 x 768 / 96 dpi. It also shows very well with Mozilla Firefox, Mozilla, and Netscape Browser 8. Finally, the latest version of Opera is much better that it has ever been, and most pages show well with it also.
Voor Nederlands-talige bezoekers: Toegang tot het Dagelijks Evangelie is verhuisd van de 'Welkom Pagina' naar het pull-down menu op de Engels-talige HomePage, onder 'Miscellaneous', direct na 'Daily Readings'. Toegang is tevens mogelijk in het pull-down menu op de Frans-talige 'homepage' onder 'Divers', direct na 'Lectures du jour'. Attentie: In beide gevallen moet u 2 keer op de back arrow klikken met uw muis (linker kant) om terug te komen op de homepaginas.
19 May 2005 : HomePage with 6-tab Pull-down Menu and SiteMap-TreeMenuTo gain speed, without sacrificing clarity, both menus previously installed (10 May 2005) have been replaced. The HomePage offers two different menus to choose from. Both provide access to each and every page of this site.
Which one to choose is a matter of personal preference. More details are provided on the HomePage itself.
12 April 2005 : Akathist HymnThe Akathist Hymn to the Mother of God has a page of its own. Texts are in both English and French.
Choral interpretations (samples) from Russia, Slovakia and Serbia.
10 March 2005 : Special Exhibitions & Private collectionsTwo exhibitions were added, one of medieval Roman frescoes, and the other of Russian icons of the 16th - 19th centuries.
27 February 2005 : HomePage with New Pull-down MenuThe HomePage has been equipped with a new pull-down menu, easier to customize and position. Each of its links can be opened in a new window if so desired.
With the links already provided on the HomePage opening screen, and now also including the links in the new pull-down menu, you are only one click away from any of the main subjects of interest on this site.
22 February 2005 : Medieval Byzantine IconsThe Medieval Byzantine Icons page has been enriched with some excellent links. They were received as a courtesy of Dr. Oleg Ulyanov, and have been included under "Russia and Ukraine" at the bottom of the section "Unspecified location", the first link named "Christianity in icons, murals & mosaics" (6 screens down from the top of "Unspecified").
22 February 2005 : Special Feature: Vladimir Grigorenko, IconographerVladimir Grigorenko has accepted my invitation to talk with us about his work and life as an iconographer. The images he has made available for this purpose give an excellent idea of the astounding beauty of the interior decoration of the St. Seraphim Orthodox Cathedral (in Dallas TX). And his account of iconographic issues is fascinating. Comments and Questions can be communicated in 2 ways: by FORM and by BLOG, the latter being a new experience for IconsExplained.com .
4 February 2005 : Unique Russian Icon TourGood news: The number of people that have signed up has surpassed the minimum required to have the trip going! Read more.
4 February 2005 : Google-type ads on Welcome PageAdvertising space is available for advertising Goods & Services pertinent to Byzantine Icons.
4 January 2005 : Websites-IndexCoding of the Websites-Index page was adjusted and the page now displays well in both Internet Explorer and the Netscape family (Netscape, Mozilla, Firefox). With that being the case, most pages of this website, if not all, will now display well in the Netscape family (as well as in IE of course).
3 January 2005 : Specials"The Interview with God" presentation and other "specials" were moved to a separate "Specials" page.
28 December 2004 : HomePage with multi-tab pull-down menuWith the (new) multi-tab pull-down menu you are literally only one click away from a subject of interest. It displays well in Internet Explorer and in the Netscape family (Netscape, Mozilla, Firefox) for resolutions of 800x600 and 1024x768 pixels.
16 December 2004 : New Contemporary Byzantine Icons Page - IntroductionThe Contemporary Byzantine Icons chapter was rewritten and expanded. The new page is a non-frames version. A frames version was evaluated but did not offer any advantages.
At the center is the Iconographers' Index-Imagebase with approximately 200 entries, 96% of which are iconographers from all over the world.
More recently, i.e. after the new page was posted, coding changes were made allowing the page to appear well also in Netscape/Mozilla/Firefox.
14 November 2004 : Unique Russian Icon Tour-PilgrimageIconsExplained.com has agreed to advertise a unique Russian Icon Tour-Pilgrimage. The tour is planned to take place in the summer of 2005 and will be led by Fr. Ilya Gotlinsky with assistance of Dr. Gonzales. Fr. Gotlinsky qualifies the Tour as unique because to the best of his knowledge a tour of this kind has never taken place before. Click here to visit the Tour Main Page, or click here to read Fr. Ilya's open letter-invitation to join the tour. A tour of this nature requires considerable planning which is why the deadline for inscriptions is January 24, 2005.
2 November 2004 : Russian Icon TourIconsExplained.com is announcing a unique Russian Icon Tour that will be led by Father Ilyan Gotlinsky. It is unique because in addition to taking the participants to the Golden Ring and other well known Russian architectural and icon painting centers, the itinerary also takes them to several secluded regions in Northern Russia which are not often visited but that are of exquisite beauty.
16 September 2004 : Scrolling Icon GalleriesAll Scrolling Icon Galleries can now be viewed with one single click on the HomePage horizontal scroller (link).
29 August 2004 : What are Byzantine Icons?For those who hear about Byzantine Icons for the first time: A brief history of the beginnings of Byzantine Icons - The Visual and Spiritual Treasures of the Orthodox Church. The page is accessed from the Welcome Page.
Cf. entry of 4 May 2004.
7 April 2004 : Splendid Special Exhibitions and Collections !Two Splendid "not-to-be-missed" "once-in-a-lifetime" Current Special Exhibitions and Collections provide a unique opportunity to see a large number of magnificent original byzantine icon masterworks !
1 Metropolitan Museum of Art - Special Exhibitions: Byzantium: Faith and Power, New York
23 March - 4 July 2004 350 master works ! Click the link to learn more...
2 University of Toronto Art Centre - Private Collections, Toronto
Malcove Collection and Dr. John Foreman Collection.
Permanent Over 100 icons ! Click the link to learn more...
16 March 2004 : News - Les nouvellesA page was added with religious news sources, Catholic and Orthodox, in both English and French. Also included are several world news sources, a Google WebSearch / SiteSearch box, and a neat (fast loading) analog clock. The News link is located on the HomePage in the lower right hand corner.
14 March 2004 : New Scrolling Gallery with Extra Large images >> #4This additional gallery shows several icons that were made available expressly for this purpose as a courtesy of the artists, to whom I extend my special thanks.
28 February 2004 & 14 March 2004: SiteSearch has become truly effective and has some interesting additional benefits.The SiteSearch page has been modified. Pico has been discontinued, and in its place have come 2 different types of search tools: (1) Bookmarks (2) Site Search by major search engines (Google, Teoma and Yahoo!).
As a result, searching of the site now has become truly effective and easy.
There are some additional benefits as well. Using SiteSearch to retrieve a specific page (as an alternative to using the SiteMap) can turn up sites that are in the news. Like Mel Gibson's new movie 'Passion', for example. To see this for yourself, enter 'Passion' in either Google or Teoma on the SiteSearch page (Yahoo! doesn't have this feature). This will turn up the pages of this website with the Passion of Christ, together with references to Mel Gibson's movie.
Another interesting benefit is that you can do a sitesearch on any site you like (Teoma search engine box only). In the Teoma box, as it appears on the SiteSearch page, replace the (IconsExplained.com) domain name with any other domain name of your liking. Next, enter the keyword to the left, making sure to have a few blank spaces, between it and 'site'. Then hit the search button.
21 February 2004 : Summary & Overview of Website on Byzantine, Ancient, Medieval and Contemporary Icons painted in the Traditional Religious Orthodox StyleA section was added to the Summary / Overview to clarify what precisely is meant with 'Byzantine icon' in the Orthodox Church.
4 January 2004 : Armenian IconsIcons of Armenia. I didn't know if they existed, because I never saw one. That is until today. As can be expected not many are well preserved. Some are though and give some idea of the particular style.
21 December 2003 : Scroller Image Galleries (frames version)New scrolling image galleries are in place, including some beautiful choral chant. They are accessible from the horizontal scroller on the Home Page, and from the Icon Galleries - MasterPage as well. Approximate total view time is 10 min. Total music play time is up to 12.5 min. Enjoy!
21 November 2003 : Icons - EthiopiaA new section has been created on the General References Pages for Icons in Ethiopia.
18 November 2003 : New Entries / UnclassifiedA new section has been created on the General References Pages for New Entries / Unclassified. These await classifying into the various pages, but can already be consulted as they are.
8-15 November 2003 : Vastly accelerated loading of scroller applets (image scroller)Applets take a long time to load in IE (minutes not seconds). Here is how to resolve that :
1. Go to Tools Tab in IE menu 2. Click Internet Options 3. Click Advanced
4. Go to the java section and uncheck all items except Java Console 5. Reboot your computer.
As a result the homepage, the scroller applets will loads 5 to 6 times faster and move the images much faster as well ==> click this link to see.
17 September 2003 : Understanding IconsA section 'Undertanding Icons' has been added to 'Byzantine Icons by Subject. The six or seven references that you will find there shed light on icons from a number of different perspectives.
14 September 2003 : Sortable indexes on a (new) frame pageThe sortable indexes (Website-Index and Icon-Gallery-Index) are moved over to a frame page.
29 August 2003 : The Ames Hymn CollectionIf you like Christian Gospel Hymns, check out the recently added link to The Ames Hymn Collection, 522 melodious hymns you can play at random, and they keep playing!
The second one is an Icon-Gallery-Index. The Gallery-Index combines two functions in one file, it is both a (sortable) icon gallery and a (sortable) icon index. Images can be sorted by number, type, name, century and country. The Gallery-Index also permits a quick preview. When moving the mouse over the image number (link), a separate window pops open with an image showing inside; the window closes when the mouse is moved off the link.
11 July 2003 : SiteSearchThe PicoSearch SiteSearch utility was updated and can be used again.
10 July 2003 : Drop-down menus :Drop-down menus were added on many pages: better navigation, and easier switching between English and French pages.
10 June 2003 : Icon GalleriesNew Icon Galleries were made according to the 5 most common icon types. A separate 6th 'type' or category is housing 'special' icons. These are icons that do not really fit into the 5 common types. The Holy Trinity icon of Andrei Rublev is an example of this category. New images are being added gradually.
18 May 2003 : UkraineThe Ukraine has been given its own place in the 'History & Geography' chapter of the General References, making it easier to read up on it.
16 May 2003 : Plunder in CyprusPlunder in Cyprus and other articles on the same subject shed light on art theft on a gigantic scale. The articles are included under Special Reports (new) of the General References page. Click the link above to go there.
3 May 2003 :
More on Catacombs | Christian Art through the Ages: a 'must-see'
Four Scenes of the Resurrection | Quatre scènes de la Résurrection
29 March 2003 : A new page was added :
Four Scenes of the Holy Passion | Quatre scènes de la Sainte Passion
24-25 March 2003 : Grand Masters of Icon PaintingPage is being completely redone.
18-19 March 2003 : Medieval Byzantine Icons in Georgia, Lebanon and Syria. Icons by Master iconographer Vladislav ANDREYEV (Contemporary Byzantine Icons)The Medieval Byzantine Icons page has been enriched with icon images from Georgia, Lebanon and Syria. With regard to icons of Georgia, they look quite different from the byzantine icons as we know them. There also seems to be some resemblance to Coptic icons : small (short) bodies, relatively large heads with big eyes, great simplicity.
The following are additions to the Contemporary Byzantine Icons page : an iconostasis with clickable icons by the well known Master iconographer Vladislav ANDREYEV, icons from France by the Carmel of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and icons from Singapore by Yin Pieu LIM, Nana QUPARADZE and Andrew WEI.
14 March 2003 : La Vénération pour la Sainte Vierge Marie | Mère de Dieu Platytera (icône)The wonderful article written by the contemporary iconographer Nick Papas (see 21 February 2003) has been translated into French, with the help of a monk. In the article, Nick Papas explains the prominence, in an Orthodox Church, of the Mother of God Platytera. Click the link above to read the article and see the icon of the Mother of God Platytera.
The Veneration for the Holy Virgin Mary | Mother of God Platytera (icon)
(2) The Filioque is one further issue in the Great Schism. Pertinent artcles in this regard were located. Again, you can find the links in the chapter Ecumenism on the General References Page. The articles help explain what "Filioque" means and how it pertains to the Great Schism issue. Click the above link to go there.
7 March 2003 : The Jesus Prayer - La Prière de JésusThe Jesus Prayer (or the Prayer of the heart) is an important element of Orthodox spirituality as is mentioned on the site " Pages Orthodoxes La Transfiguration ". A link to this site is included in the chapter Eastern Orthodoxy on the General References Page. Click the above link to go there.
5 March 2003 : « Window » on the Coptic ChurchA « Window » on the Coptic Church and Coptic Iconography has been added as a separate section of the General References Page. Click the link to go there.
24 February 2003 : Additions to The Music PageBy now you probably know that this site is continually expanding. Most recently some 12 new entries have been added to The Music Page : single music pieces and entire pages with links.
21 February 2003 : Additions & Modifications(1) A wonderful article explaining the prominence, in an Orthodox Church, of the Mother of God Platytera was added to the page The Veneration of the Holy Virgin Mary. The article is written by the contemporary iconographer Nick Papas.
(2) The number of establishments on the page Old icons for sale has doubled.
12 February 2003 : Links restoredAll links restored. This concerns the links of Belmont University that were broken 3 weeks ago (on 25 January) and the links of the Hellenic Ministry of Culture that were broken 2 days ago.
10 February 2003 : Broken Links - GreeceIt appears that all links of the Hellenic Ministry of Culture are broken. This problem started on 9 February and affects all the links that start with http://www.culture.gr. Collectively, they provide(d) access to about 270 images, about half of all images to medieval byzantine icons in Greece. Hopefully this is a temporary situation. It will be watched closely and should it not improve, the links will need to be removed. I am sorry for the inconvenience this may cause.
8 February 2003 : Old icons for saleA new page has been added that lists Establishments that restore, evaluate and sell icons. Most of them are located in Western Europe (England, Holland, Germany).
7 February 2003 : The Great Miracle on Orthodox Easter - The Holy Fire in JerusalemVirtually unknown in the West :
2 February 2003 : Page OverhaulThe following pages were redone / expanded :
(1) Icon Types (both English and French)
(2) Icons and Lives of Saints (both English and French)
(3) Feast Day icons (both English and French)
(4) Icons of Angels (English only, for now)
(5) Grand Masters of Icon Painting (English only, for now)
25 January 2003 : Broken Belmont University LinksBelmont University Honors Program links all appear to be broken. This concerns links on the Feast Day Icons page and on the Medieval Byzantine Icons - Links Page. In the meantime all links on the Feast Day Icons page have been permanently replaced (English and French). The links on the Med. Byz. Icons Links Page cannot be replaced as easily, and perhaps never can. For the time being they are being left in place [inactivated], in the hope that the problem at Belmont University will be resolved. This concerns the following links : 3 links - Cyprus ; 1 link - Palermo, Sicily ; 1 link - Yaroslavl ; 3 links - Sinai ; 4 links - Turkey ; 2 links - Unspecified.
24 January 2003 : Service back to normalThank you for your patience
21 January 2003 : Service InterruptionOur webserver will be migrated to a new location. The work is scheduled for Wednesday Jan 22, 2003 3:00pm Pacific Time and will cause disruption to our website for approximately 15 mins. After migration is completed, web performance will speed up and reliability will be higher. However the effects of DNS caching may cause disruption to our service for up to 24 hrs. We apologize in advance for any inconvenience caused.
19 January 2003 : New Additions(1) New page about Icons of Angels
(2) New Icon Gallery for easy viewing of images with links to historical accounts. It's the only page on the entire website using frames. Therefore, note the way of proceeding with a RIGHT CLICK.
12 January 2003 : Music PageThe Music Page was separated from the home page and relocated. Some very nice midi music files were added, and the 50+ midi files were subdivided. Enjoy!
29 December 2002 : Copyright on midi filesApparently, when playing midis on the Internet, one risks being sued for an amount that can run as high as $1.0 million (US Funds). The good news is that I have obtained permission from St. Edward's Church (Plymouth, UK) to link to their site and play their music. Thank you very much Mrs. Annie Barnes and St. Edward's for your courtesy!
27 December 2002 : More MusicThe Music Page now contains 2 parts: Part 1: Byzantine Orthodox and Christian Music. Part 2: Midi Gallery with Christmas and Christian Music. Only one click is needed to play a midi file.
Furthermore, the entire Music Page now is part of the Home Page. It is still best accessed through the sitemap as before. When the Home Page (now including the Music Page) comes onto the screen, some music starts playing automatically. You can turn off this music (or change the volume) using the sound control*, which you can access by a button on the Home Page Menu. The automatic tune will stop playing when you click on one of the midi music titles. You can restart the automatic player whenever you want. HINT: If you want the music to keep playing when viewing one or more pages of this site, then right click your mouse to go to the page you want to view.
* As of 30 December 2002 'sound control' has been replaced by 'music control'
20 December 2002 : Code OverhaulThe code of all pages is being gradually overhauled. Once the work is complete, legibility in Internet Explorer and Netscape will be substantially the same (font, font size and line spacing). As a result, the page being overhauled may be temporarily unavailable. I am sorry for any inconvenience this may cause. At this point in time the overhaul of all major pages has been completed.
7 December 2002 : Substantial change to 2 webpages- Types of Marian Icons : additional images and type descriptions
- Contemporary Byzantine Icons : 14 additional sites (links to sites) of contemporary icon painters ; more detailed commentary
11 October 2002 : New features2 new features were added : A fully functional site search engine (Courtesy of PicoSearch) ; A translation machine (Courtesy of AltaVista)
Enjoy your visit !