Ethiopian Icons

Icons

Ethiopian Icons

Ethiopian Icon
The richly hued biblical paintings of Ethiopian Icons primarily illustrate scenes from the old testament. Until the middle of the 20th century, the paintings of Christian Ethiopia remained virtually unknown outside its borders. Yet over the course of the past millennium, Ethiopian artists have produced a vast quantity of unique and creative icons, illuminated manuscripts and wall paintings in churches. By virtue of its geographical position, Ethiopian paintings belong to Africa, however, due to close contacts with the adjacent areas, their art incorporates elements of the Eastern and Western Christian artistic tradition, as well as those of Coptic and Islamic cultures and the cultures of the people of the Indian Ocean area. Ethiopian artists succeeded in embracing and transforming significant elements of these traditions, while their paintings remained a unique phenomenon deeply rooted in the African soil.

The purpose of Ethiopian art is to describe in color, the drama of the gospels. The icons have been used for devotional purposes, both as objects of power and as votive offerings. They are believed to be permeated with the spiritual presence of the saints and in particular of the Virgin Mary. Prayers made to an icon are offered directly to a specific saint or to the Virgin herself. The icon can elicit either a blessing on the righteous or punishment to wrongdoers. The faithful often commissioned icons with the intention of obtaining God's mercy, as well as the intercession and protection of the Virgin Mary.

These icons are made of wood and painted panels, of stone, or a combination of both. They are used on personal altars or worn as a personal talisman for protection on a cord around the neck or tucked into a pocket. They are usually a collaboration between two types of artisans: the carver who makes the wood or stone case and a painter who draws upon a repertoire of biblical themes.

Mary and Christ Child Icon

This lovely icon pictures images of Mary and Christ Child on the center panel and Saint George and the Dragon on the inside of the front panel.

10 3/8"T x 6 1/8W" x 5/8"D (when closed). $225.00

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Medium Icon of Mary & Christ Child

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Medium Icon of Mary & Christ Child

This icon pictures Mary and Child surrounded by guardian angels. The front door panels are nicely carved with processional crosses.

6"T x 3 3/4"W x 1/2"D. $187.00
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Medium Icon with Carved Cross on Top

This icon pictures Mary and Child surrounded by guardian angels on the two side panels. The front door panels are nicely carved with processional crosses.

7 1/4"T x 4 1/8"W x 1/2"D. $187.00

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Tiny Leather Icon

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Tiny Leather Icon

This charming miniature leather covered icon is done by an artist who has a little different painting style than we usually see in most of our icons. He also paints a lovely border around each of the scenes. The inside images are from the Life of Christ. The outside of each panel has a painting of an angel surrounded by a similar painted border.

2 7/8" square (when closed) 5 3/4"W (when opened) x 5/8"D
$87.00

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Large Ethiopian Icon

This lovely large wooden icon is beautifully carved with images of processional crosses on the doors and on the back. There are three small wooden crosses on the top. Among the eleven charming painted scenes are images of Christ changing water to wine, Mary with the child Christ, and Saint George slaying the dragon.

12.5"T x 9.5"W (closed) (18"W open) x 1"D. $445.00

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Small Traveler's Icon

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Small Traveler's Icon

This charming little travel sized icon has doors that open on both the front and back of the icon. Inside the crosse shaped door are images of Christ on the Cross and also of him teaching. On the reverse side , the door opens to images of Mary and the Christ Child and Saint George and the Dragon.

3 7/8"T x 2 5/8"W x 1/2"D. $98.00

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"Silver" Processional Icon

This lovely “silver”  processional icon in the shape of a chapel topped by a classic Coptic Cross opens to an image of St George slaying the dragon flanked on either side by archangels.

9.5"T x 7.5 "W x 3/16 "D. $225.00

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Miniature Traveler's Icon

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Miniature Traveler's Icon

This tiny little icon is absolutely delightful! The center image of Mary with the Christ Child is flanked by painted door panels of protecting angels. Fits easily in your pocket!

2 7/8"T x 1 15/16"W x 1/2"D. $98.00

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Baptism of Jesus Icon

This lovely leather icon shows Jesus being baptized by John the Baptist with an angel looking on. The facing panel show Jesus confronting the devil while his followers watch. The outside leather covering is etched with classic Ethiopian designs incorporating crosses and ever-watchful eyes.

4.25"T x 3.25"W (closed) x 7"W (opened) x 1/2"D (closed). $135.00

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