Architecture as Icon: Perception and Representation of Architecture in Byzantine Art  -     Edited By: Slobodan Curic, Evangelia Hadjitryphonos
    By: Edited by Slobodan Curcic & Evangelia Hadjitryphonos
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Architecture as Icon: Perception and Representation of Architecture in Byzantine Art

Yale University Press / 2009 / Paperback

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Product Description

Byzantine art abandoned classical ideals in favor of conveying spiritual concepts through stylized physical forms. This exhibition claims that scholars have focused on holy figures in icons but dismissed the architectural context as irrelevant. Contributors suggest a new, more holistic way of viewing. 200 color illustrations. 320 pages, softcover. Yale University.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 320
Vendor: Yale University Press
Publication Date: 2009
Dimensions: 11.00 X 9.00 (inches)
ISBN: 030012211X
ISBN-13: 9780300122114
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Publisher's Description

Presenting the first formulation of the central subject, this volume challenges major assumptions long held by Western art historians and provides new ways of thinking about, looking at, and understanding Byzantine art in its broadest geographic and chronological framework, from A.D. 300 to the early nineteenth century.

Byzantine art abandoned classical ideals in favor of formulas that conveyed spiritual concepts through stylized physical forms. Scholarship dealing with Byzantine icons has previously been largely focused on depictions of holy figures, dismissing representations of architecture as irrelevant space-filling background. Architecture as Icon demonstrates that background representations of architecture are meaningful, active components of compositions, often as significant as the human figures. The book provides a critical view for understanding the Byzantine conception of architectural forms and space and the corresponding intellectual underpinnings of their representation.

Introduced by four thought-provoking essays, the catalogue divides the material as included in the exhibition into four categories identified as: generic, specific, and symbolic representations, and a final grouping entitled “From Earthly to Heavenly Jerusalem.” This handsomely illustrated volume addresses various approaches to depicting architecture in Byzantine art that contrast sharply with those of the Renaissance and subsequent Western artistic tradition.

Author Bio

Slobodan Curcic is professor of Early Christian Byzantine Architecture and Monumental Decoration in the Department of Art and Archaeology at Princeton University. Evangelina Hadjitryphonos is Honorary Head of Department, Hellenic Ministry of Culture.

Editorial Reviews

"Beautifully produced, this book will be valuable to scholars and advanced students but with the caution that, as Curcic surely knows, there is more to building than theology."—A. Cutler, Choice

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