Art: 20th Century Icons

The greatest artists Russia ever produced were the profoundly religious painters of icons of 15th Century Novgorod and Moscow. Their serene holy families and saints, compacted of austere line and pure color, were a legacy from Byzantium. But icon-painting went out of fashion when Peter the Great imported more sophisticated Western painting (along with field artillery, shaving and ballroom dancing) in the 18th Century.

Last week a small group of refugee Russian artists, impelled by deep religious feelings of their own, put on a display of 20th Century icons at New York's Fordham...

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