Zograph Philipp Cover Image
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Зограф Филип
Zograph Philipp

Author(s): Mariela Stoykova
Subject(s): Christian Theology and Religion, History, Fine Arts / Performing Arts, History of Church(es), Geography, Regional studies, Theology and Religion
Published by: Институт за изследване на изкуствата, Българска академия на науките

Summary/Abstract: In the publications on Bulgarian Revival art the facts about the icon-painter Philip are completely missing. He became well-known in the recent time: in the Winter of 2014, when the Apostles frieze if the Church “Sts Cosmas and Damian” of the monastery in the village Guiguintsi, has been cleaned by the restorer Alexandar Penev. He has discovered the signature of the icon-painter located under the images of Sts Apostles Andrew and Marc. Two of the icons of the Royal doors at the monastery of Guiguintsi are part of the Permanent Exhibition in the Museum for Christian Art in the Crypt. The rest of them are still in the monastery. They are depicted about 1814–1815 after the its renovation. From all the collected materials we can conclude that Philip Zograph was very creative and productive. Nevertheless he stood away from the public interest and knowledge. According to Bulgarian Revival art researchers Philip Zograph is an artist with a very specific manner of expression. This is the reason why he could be very easily identified. The earliest among his preserved ions in Bulgaria is the one with the images of St Virgin Hodegetria from the church “St Petka the Old” in Sofia. This icon has been depicted about 1814. After that Philip Zograph has arrived in just-renovated monastery of the village Guiguintsi where he has been working and creating for more than an year. Then his errands to the churches “The Holy Veil of Virgin Mary”and “St Nicolaus” in Doupnitsa and “St Nicolaus” in the near village Cherven Breg” (1818) have been accomplished. One year later the icon painter fulfills one of his most important and significant errands to the church “Dormition of Mother of God”, Kyustendil. When this task is already over, he comes back again to the region of Breznik. There is a group of icons, preserved in the Museum of History in Pernik from that period (1819 – 1820). These are almost all of the icons of the Royal doors in the church of “St Petka”, Breznik. The only piece of work dated by the artist himself is the icon of Virgin Mary with the Infant with the Holy 40 Martyrs of Sebastia and St Charalampius (1821) kept in the Crypt – Sofia. Two other icons – part of the iconostasis – date from the same period. They are part of the collection in the National Archaeological and National History Museum in Sofia. The last well-known art work of the icon painter – “Ascension” – is one of the icons on the Royal doors in the church “The Nativity of Christ”, Pirot. Philip has been painting it untill the end of the 20s of the 19th century. Based on the collected data and the efforts made to discover stylistic and iconographic parallels to his work I concluded that there is a close relation between his art and the circle of the icon-painters Kraste from Veles and the monk Antonius from the region of Bitolya, although he works very often with the artists Christo Dimitrov and Ioan the Iconpainter. Analizing the relative dating of the earliest and the last icons of Philip Zograph, we can suppose that he was born in the 60s of the 18 century and died around 1830.

  • Issue Year: 2015
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 359-372
  • Page Count: 14
  • Language: English, Bulgarian