Title: Mother of God of Tolga
Medium: Wood, gold leaf, gold thread, beads, semi-precious jewels
Dimensions: 14 3/4 x 16 1/2 in. (37.5 x 41.9 cm)
Marks: Sticker on back reads: C. Fredrick Faude, 505 Bridgeway, Sausolito, California
Credit Line: Gift of Ann and Henry Brunnier. In the Ann and Henry Brunnier Collection, Brunnier Art Museum, University Museums, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa.
Icons are primarily objects of religious reverence. They are also, on a more secular level, exquisitely crafted works of art. The art of the icon has persevered for centuries because religious traditions and geographic isolation contributed to the continuance of this primarily medieval painting style. The basic techniques of icon painting remained the same as they were handed from one generation of icon painters to another, and the images portrayed on icons nearly always follow established types. Russian icons are typically stylized images of saints painted on a wood panel adorned with semi-precious stones and jewels.