Byzantine art, architecture, paintings, and other visual arts produced in the Middle Ages
The style that characterized Byzantine art was almost entirely concerned with religious expression; specifically with the translation of church theology into artistic terms. Byzantine Architecture and painting (little sculpture was produced during the Byzantine era) remained uniform and anonymous
Frescoes in Russian churches have been in existence since the country’s conversion to Christianity in 988AD. Byzantine in style, the art form has barely changed over the past 1000 years. Holy Protection Cathedral frescoes continue this tradition, at the same time incorporating elements from the local Australian landscape in use of colour and form. The frescoes depict biblical scenes in vivid imagery. To stand inside the Cathedral, surrounded by the awe-inspiring work, is to feel transported from everyday life into a different realm.
The most famous Russian iconographer was the monk Andrei Rublev (c.1370-1430), whose renowned masterpiece, The Holy Trinity Icon (1411-25), is the finest of all Russian icons. He transcended the Byzantine formulae, and the mannerisms of the Novgorod school founded by the Byzantine refugee Theophanes the Greek. Rublev’s icons are unique for their cool colours, soft shapes and quiet radiance. The last of the great Russian icon painters of the Novgorod school, was Dionysius (c.1440-1502), noted for his icons for the Volokolamsky monastery, and his Deesis for the Cathedral of the Dormition in Moscow. He was in fact the first celebrated figure in the Moscow school of painting (c.1500-1700), whose Byzantine-inspired icons were produced by the likes of Nicephorus Savin, Procopius Chirin and the great Simon Ushakov (1626-1686).