Title of the article:



Olga O. Kozarezova

Information about the author/authors

Olga O. Kozarezova — PhD in Philosophy, Assistant Professor, Moscow State Pedagogical University, Vernadskogo ave., 88, 119571 Moscow, Russia. E-mail: koz.helga@gmail.com


Theory and history of culture




Vol. 54


pp. 23–34


June 17, 2018

Date of publication

December 28, 2019

Index UDK


Index BBK

71.0 + 85.147(2)4


The paper aims to show the influence of theology of Hesychasm on the iconographic tradition of Ancient Rus` as exemplified in the analysis of paintings of St. Theophanes the Greek in the Church of the Transfiguration on Ilyina street. A distinctive feature of the art of St. Theophanes is the “theology of light”, which found expression not only in the iconographer’s artistic techniques, but also in the iconographic program as a whole, devoted to the theme of “Transfiguration”, which is associated with the doctrine of Hesychasm about the uncreated Divine light as a symbol of spiritual revival, where Christ is a prototype of all the deified creature. Close attention is paid to the paintings of the Trinity chapel, in particular the famous fresco “Trinity”, where the artist reveals the theological content of the Trinity dogma in the light of Hesychast ideas, which wasn’t accidental. At this time heresies appeared in Novgorod, distorting the Orthodox doctrine of the consubstantial and indivisible Trinity. The paper also demonstrates that the symbolism of the temple and its internal structure relate to the ideas of Hesychasm. The illumination of the temple is conceived in such a way that the light “snatches out” the faces of the saints, so that in these flashes of light, in the falling light rays, too there is also a connection with theology of light. Hence, the author concludes that the work of the great icon painter should be considered in close connection with the sacred space of the temple, since the fresco is its integral part. Also, the program of paintings is closely related to the liturgical service, where the images of light in the Liturgy are intimately linked to the subject area of frescos and temple architecture.


Frescoes of Theophanes the Greek, Hesychasm, theology of light, sacred space, iconography, artistic techniques, symbols of light and color.


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