In Search of a Missing Frame. An Episode from the History of Printing in Ruthenia Cover Image

W poszukiwaniu zaginionej ramki. Epizod z dziejów drukarstwa na Rusi
In Search of a Missing Frame. An Episode from the History of Printing in Ruthenia

Author(s): Agnieszka Gronek
Subject(s): Fine Arts / Performing Arts, Visual Arts, Local History / Microhistory
Published by: Instytut Historii Sztuki Uniwersytetu Jagiellońskiego
Keywords: Prints; graphic; ortodox art;Ruthenian culture;

Summary/Abstract: A large architectonic frame encompassing the space of a leaf is one of the mostrecognisable elements embellishing books published by Ivan Fyodorov. The frame, arcade incharacter, built in two projections and enclosed in a perspective outline, is an original andinnovative motive in the developing Cyrillic printing. Although its innovative form copiesthe composition of the German engraver Erhard Schoen, owing to its positioning on thetitle page of the first print of the Bible in Old Church Slavonic (Ostróg 1581), it constitutesa clear and representative symbol of modern Ruthenian culture until today. Fyodorov used itin three books, after which it disappeared without trace. However, its copies appeared againin Vilnius prints, not only Orthodox but also Protestant and Catholic. The above-mentionedfact attests to the universality of decorative elements which freely cross the borders of confessionand culture. It also enables us to analyse contacts between printers of the largest culturalcentres in the Commonwealth and trace the roots of the spread of patterns and inspirations.Originally not containing any content, the discussed ornamental motif, owing to the fameof Ivan Fyodorov and high value of his prints, became a symbol of Ruthenian culture, whichcould be used by Vilnius printers for financial purposes, and perhaps ideological purposesin interdenominational polemics. There is no doubt that in the 20th century it was a clearcarrier of national ideology, to which Ukrainian activists of culture and science referred.

  • Issue Year: 2016
  • Issue No: 16
  • Page Range: 5-14
  • Page Count: 10
  • Language: Polish