Monday, March 23, 2009

All of Creation Rejoices in Thee

All of creation rejoices in thee,
O Full of Grace!
The assembly of angels and the race of man
O Sanctified Temple and Spiritual Paradise
The Glory of Virgins!
From whom God was incarnate and became a child,
Our God before the ages.
He made thy body into a throne
And thy womb he made more spacious than the heavens!
All of creation rejoices in thee,
O Full of Grace,
Glory to Thee!

video

This is a 6'x4' icon I painted on rolled canvas for our church. I put this slide show together for a friend of mine who wanted to see the process of icon-painting, and how the image emerges as it is "painted with light." This isn't the traditional egg-tempera/gessoed-panel process. I'm going to stay with acrylics till I retire. I don't trust myself or my kids around the pigments, several of which could kill us if they spilled.

The icon is called the "Virgin of the Sign." It is based upon the prophecy of Isaiah: "Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; behold a virgin shall conceive in the womb, and shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Emmanuel' (Is.vii,14). The image of the Mother of God with the Child Emmanuel in her bosom is this very Sign announced by the prophet and revealed to the world in its consummation. It is from this that the icon derives its name. The Sign is an image of the Divine Incarnation, of the revelation of the Second Person of the Holy Trinity, the manifestation of the Son of God through His human nature received from the mother of God...One can say that as, according to the words of St Basil the Great, "the word of truth...in the economy of the Spirit...is so brief and concise that little means much." (Ouspensky, Leonid. The Meaning of Icons. SVS Press. P.77)

The hymn, "All of Creation Rejoices in Thee," is sung during Lent, and I hummed it to myself as I painted. The song in the background is from a CD given to me without a title, so I don't know who did the music.

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