Georgia Project Lecture Series

Ekaterine Gedevanishvili:
The Unpainted Image of Christ – Textual and Visual Tradition in Medieval Georgia

Aesthetics, Art, and Architecture in the Caucasus Lecture Series Part II
In collaboration with the George Chubinashvili National Research Centre for Georgian Art History and Heritage Preservation

The present paper aims to present the textual and visual history of one of the most cultivated icons in Christian culture – the icon of Christ “not made by the human hand”. It focuses on the history and local tradition of the latter in Georgia and demonstrates the specificity of Georgian images. Georgian medieval art attests to the existence of the ‘local’ iconographic type of the Mandylion – the image of Christ with shoulders imprinted on the cloth. Moreover, we can speak about the ‘local’ tradition of the topography of the Mandylion in the programs of church decorations – it is mostly in the monuments of the twelfth to thirtieth centuries that the image of the Mandylion appears in the sanctuary above the altar table. The paper focuses on those ‘distinctive’ images and places them within broad cultural and historical, as well as liturgical contexts. It also attempts to present the ‘reading’ of the rich symbolic contexts of the Icon of Incarnation through the variety of its iconographic schemes.

Special emphasis is given to the Anchiskhati icon, one of the most venerated icons in Georgia and its influence on the iconography of the Georgian images of the Mandylia.

Dr. Ekaterine Gedevanishvili is a senior researcher at the Giorgi Chubinashvili National Research Centre for Georgian Art History and Heritage Preservation. She obtained her PhD in Art History in 2004. Eka Gedevanishvili is specialized in medieval Georgian wall paintings and icons. At present, she runs a multidisciplinary project that aims to prepare a monograph dedicated to the 'Cult of the Holy Warriors in Georgia'. She is a longtime collaborator of the KHI, especially regarding the "Georgian Project". In 2019, Eka Gedevanishvili directed the Summer school 'Tao-Klarjeti' in collaboration with the KHI, and the Universities of Freiburg and Basel. She has participated in many international conferences and congresses and has been published on medieval Georgian art intensively.

 

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12 April 2022, 2:00pm

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