Contesting the Logic of Painting by Barber;C.E.

By Barber;C.E.

Drawing on quite a number philosophical and theological writings produced in eleventh-century Byzantium, this e-book deals a examining of the icon and Byzantine aesthetics that not just expands our realizing of those subject matters yet demanding situations our assumptions concerning the murals itself.

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The Synodikon of Orthodoxy helped to deÀne the precise terms by which the painting of a sacred subject could convey the truth. It presented the icon as an embodiment of human knowledge. As a made thing, detached from its subject, the icon was understood to encompass that which was possible for human understanding. 89 When one looks at an icon, it is the face of the subject that looks back at one (Àg. 1). It is this body perceived by the viewer’s body that marks the bounds of understanding. Throughout the texts above, we have seen that the icon is closely equated with the body.

145–150. Theophany was a subject of some interest in the second phase of iconoclasm. For example, Methodios included a lengthy discussion of this topic in his Life of Euthymios: Jean Gouillard, “La vie d’Euthyme de Sardes (d. 771–98. Notable discussions on this topic include: André Grabar, L’Iconoclasme byzantin: Le Dossier archéologique, revd. ed. (Paris: Flammarion, 1984): 252–69; Jacqueline Lafontaine-Dosogne, “Théophanes—visions auxquelles participent les prophètes dans l’art byzantin après la restauration des images,” Synthronon.

It clearly implies a close relation, if not an identity between icon and subject. 71 The precise nature of this relationship is discussed later in the text. 72 By these quick steps the Synodikon is able to make the point that images are a legitimate means of Christian knowledge. They 68 Barber, Figure and Likeness: 61–81. The importance of this point for the ninth-century iconophiles is particularly well articulated by Ken Parry: Kenneth Parry, “Theodore Studites and the Patriarch Nicephoros on Image-Making as a Christian Imperative,” Byzantion 59 (1989): 164–83.

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