Item #561 Russian Icons and Objects of Ecclesiastical and Decorative Arts from the Collection of George R. Hann: January Twelfth through February Twenty-Second 1944. Andrey Avinoff, compiler.
Russian Icons and Objects of Ecclesiastical and Decorative Arts from the Collection of George R. Hann: January Twelfth through February Twenty-Second 1944
Russian Icons and Objects of Ecclesiastical and Decorative Arts from the Collection of George R. Hann: January Twelfth through February Twenty-Second 1944

Russian Icons and Objects of Ecclesiastical and Decorative Arts from the Collection of George R. Hann: January Twelfth through February Twenty-Second 1944

Pittsburgh: Carnegie Institute, 1944. Publisher's wrappers. Item #561

Book measures: 25.5 x 17.5 cm. [84] pages: plates. Text in English. A copy with light chipping and signs of wear. However, its binding remains tight, and the text is clean and free of any markings.

The catalog presents a detailed overview of 102 icons from the 14th to 16th centuries, alongside 150 items used in Russian church rituals and decorative arts. Among these antiquities, notable items include a 12th-century Georgian bronze triptych and a 15th-century icon by Andrei Rublev. Some pieces are noted as originating from the Tretyakov Gallery.

Since its debut in America in the late 1930s, the George R. Hann collection has gained acclaim for its exceptional Russian icon paintings. Over 45 years, this collection was featured in 20 exhibitions, documented in over 40 publications, and eventually auctioned at Christie's for $2.5 million in 1980.

Following George Hann's death, his heirs chose to sell the icons, which by 1980 were renowned as one of the largest collections of Russian icons outside Russia. Its significance was acknowledged globally. However, during the auction, Russian émigré and expert in ancient Russian iconography, Vladimir Teteryatnikov, asserted that the collection consisted entirely of forgeries, mere replicas of icons from the Tretyakov Gallery. Despite Christie's initial legal actions against Teteryatnikov, they eventually conceded, overwhelmed by the conclusive evidence provided by the Russian specialist.

Andrey Avinoff (1884-1949) gained international recognition as an artist, lepidopterist, museum director, professor, bibliophile, and iconographer. He notably held the position of director at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh from 1926 to 1945.

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