Icon-painting school of the Kyiv - Pechersk Lavra, ca. 1870.
Egg tempera on linden board, levkas, leaf gilding and enamel paints.
Dimensions (Icon): 47x37,5 cm. Dimensions kiot (icon frame): 76x56x13 cm.
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The main image of the icon is framed by 3 bands. The outer and inner bands are decorated with an ornament with a floral pattern. The pattern is embossed on a gold background and is painted with a tempera paint in dark turquoise colors. Between them is a wide band with places prepared for the awards. Every place is outlined by a dotted line. Above the orders and medals that were previously attached by bows there are depictions of these bows painted in oil tempera. The middle band is not embossed but instead has a smooth gold background. The main field of the icon is completely embossed with a floral design.
On the field depiction of Martyr Saint Leonidas in half figure. He is wearing a military armor and a helmet. In his left hand he is holding a palm branch as a symbol of the reconciliation of God and his creation. His raised index finger pointing above which symbolizes connection with God and the higher powers.
Below the image of Martyr Saint Leonidas runs a band with an inscription: "In memory of former student of the Gymnasium of the Higher Sciences of Knyaz Bezborodko, lieutenant general Leonid Platonovich Rudanovsky, who was and who’s funeral prayers were held in the Institutskaya church on 29th of August 1877".
This Icon, which is decorated with his orders by his sister, Ludmila Platonovna Ivanova”.
The technique which was used for the creation of this icon, a very high level of skill of the icon painters of the school, the manner of execution of embossing on a gold background and the painting style confirm that this work of art was created by the masters from the Kievo-Pechersk icon painting school. The Kiev-Pechersk Lavra has long been the center the of Russian icon painting. It was founded by Alipy Pechersky at the beginning of the XII century. In the second part of the XIX century the schoolplayedthe same role in Kiev as the Imperial Academy of Arts in St. Petersburg. In 1866 the icon painting school of the monastery was officially declared an educational institution. Its goal was not only only the practical training of icon painting, but also a thorough study of drawing and painting.
According to O. Lopukhina, the school and the gilding workshop, were run by the icon painting workshop. Their activities were supervised by one of the hieromonks-icon painters of the Kievo-Pechersk Lavra. The Icon from the workshop of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra which is presented here is characterized by the high technical and artistic skills which testify to the maturity and professionalism of the master icon painters. In artistic execution of the icon, on the one hand, one can see the commitment traditions of canonical icon painting, on the other hand, there is an openness to new artistic and stylistic influences and interpretation of canonical images, which was allowed exclusively to masters of the best icon-painting schools.
Leonid Platonovich Rudanovsky (1814-1877) - Russian general, took part in the Caucasian War. Rudanovsky was born on November 21, 1814 in the city of Nizhyn, Chernigov province. His father first worked as a teacher in the Nizhyn district school, and then an inspector of the Nizhyn gymnasium. As a very educated person he tried to instill in his son a love of work and reading from a very young age. When he was just 5 years old Rudanovsky learned to read and was obsessed with reading historical books from his father’s large library. According to Nikolaj Gerbel the boy was inspired by the feats and exploits of the Greek and Roman heroes and was dreaming about military glory.
In 1826 he entered the 4th grade of the Gymnasium of the Higher Sciences of knyaz Bezborodko and in July 1832 graduated from the course with the right to the rank of 12th grade. On July 29, 1833, at the request of his father, Rudanovsky took a job as a clerical officer in the Department of Taxes and Fees and in August of the same year was approved in the rank ofa provincial secretary, but the civil service was not to his liking. On February 13, 1834, he took leave and left for Nizhyn, and then on November 1st enrolled as a student into Yakut infantry regiment. There he first became a non-comissioned office proclaiming himself, as he himself put it, “a rebellious son. "On September 17th, 1835 Rudanovsky was promoted to the rank of praporshchik – ajunior officer rank. On March 25th, 1838 he was further promoted to second lieutenant and on November 6th, 1838 entered the Imperial Military Academy. On May 8th, 1840 he was promoted to lieutenant, and on December 29th, after completion of the Academy course, was assigned to the General Staff.
On January 2nd, 1841 Rudanovsky was assigned to the headquarters of the 3rd Infantry Corps and on December 9th, 1841 was transferred to the Separate Caucasian Corps and already on December 25th, 1842, for the excellence in defenses and fighting against the highlanders he received the Order of St. Stanislav of the 3rd degree. From now on and until 1860, Rudanovsky's military activity continued almost continuously, and this period is the most brilliant period of his life and work.
1. Sign of a graduation from the Military Academy (1840).
2. Order of St. Anne, 3rd degree with a bow (1845).
3. Order of St. Vladimir, 4th degree with a bow (1845).
4. Order of St. Anne, 2nd degree (1847).
5. Order of St. George, 4th degree (1853).
6. Order of St. Vladimir, 3rd degree.
7. Star for the Order of St. Stanislaus 1st degree. (1857).
8. Order of St. Anne 1st Art. (1857); also awarded the crown and the swords (1858).
9. Medal "For the conquest of Chechnya and Dagestan" (1860).
10. Medal "For the Conquest of the Western Caucasus" (1864) (awarded to all who participated in the
1859 – 1864 expeditions and military operations against the highlanders within the Western Caucasus).
11. Medal "For the rescue of the perishing". With an image of Alexander the 2nd.
12. Medal "For the capture of Warsaw by storm" (1831).
13. Cross "For the Service in the Caucasus", for the officers (1864).
14. Order of St. Vladimir, 2nd degree. (1864).
15. Star for the Order of St. Vladimir. 16. Order of the White Eagle (1866).
17. Star for the Order of the White Eagle.
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