Gilded Icons

Gilded Icons

I have always been fascinated by medieval paintings and remember quite clearly attempting to recreate my favourite pictures as a primary student using crayons on black paper. Later in Secondary School I attempted to recreate using acrylics on canvas but for some reason I never followed up this strange urge by investigating further. I loved Russian icons in particular and was enthralled by the black and white Russian film Andrei Rublev by Andrei Tarkovsky which I saw in the late 1960s. I also saw Kon Ichikawa’s Harp of Burma as an impressionable uni student and because of one scene in this film, Shwe Dagon Pagoda in Burma was imbedded in my mind as an incredibly exotic gilded medieval landscape.

I next tried recreating viking furniture in my late teens and early twenties, fascinated by the swirling carved wood and intricate jewellery and the way they created pull-apart furniture that could be dismantled for long sea voyages and then reconstructed at a new site.

It was not until 1996, while walking to visit my mum, that I glanced at a local shop and realised that someone had opened an art studio, specialising in recreating medieval art. Of course I was totally hooked and spent the next three years attending classes and working on projects. I soon realised that my passion was to recreate as exactly as I could, but using the materials of the modern world, including acrylics and dutch gold rather than real gold leaf for gilding. And certainly there are no jewels inserted as were found in the most exquisite original paintings.

Life has taken over once more so I am not able to paint as often as I would like. But in the near future I hope to explore working with egg tempera and gold leaf that I purchased in Burma during a recent visit.

You can see examples of my Gilded Icons below. Just click on a picture to find out more about it.