History of icons
Veneration of holy images in Georgia
goes back to apostolic times and is closely linked to St. Andrew.
The canonic art of icon painting, deriving from the Holy Scripture,
can be tracked back into the decrees of ecclesiastical councils and
works by the church fathers.
The tradition of creating of holy images
goes back to the earthly life of the Savior and i linked to the
miraculously created image of Christ - Holy Face.
The earliest surviving icon in Georgia
is a 6th-7th century icon from Ancha, or
Anchiskhati. This centuries old relic, which is and embodiment of
the Christian dogma of Incarnation belongs to the Syrian artistic
circle and is associated with Syrian fathers, who came to Georgia in
the 6th century.
During the 9th and 10th centuries it
could be retraced increasing popularity of icon veneration.
Beginning from the 11th century onwards,
icon painting as well as other forms of Georgian art, fell under
Byzantian influence. Yet, the pro-Byyzantine orientation of the
church art did not involve exact repetition of its visual formulae
and stylistic features.
Largest number of icons survived form
the 13th century.
Icon painting of the 17th-18th centuries
represents a heterogeneous picture as they represent various schools
but lack the artistic perfection and spirituality which
distinguished works created in the earlier period.