The wall paintings of the Seltsou Monastery and monumental painting in the city of Arta in the end of the 17th and the beginning of the 18th century (Doctoral thesis)

Νικολιά, Δήμητρα

The primary objective of this study is the art of the painter and priest Nikolaos, who states his urban origin from Arta in the dedicatory inscription of the Seltsou monastery. This exceptionally interesting data of the painter’s urban origins, combined with his signed work (1697), enlightens the artistic creation in the city of Arta, which is the second important urban center of the Ottoman-occupied Epirus in the beginning of the 18th century. The dissertation is structured in five chapters. The first one is a brief presentation of the historical conditions prevailing in the city of Arta and the directly dependent, geographically and administratively, mountainous area of Radovisdion in the end of the 17th century. The second chapter, which is the main body of the study, is divided into three sections: initially the architecture of the catholicon is described. Then the dedicatory inscription and other inscriptions of the frescoes are analyzed. They provide valuable information regarding the founding of the monastery, the patrons and painter. The third section, devoted to the study of the frescos, includes the presentation of the iconographic program, iconographic analysis and observations on their stylistic features. The third phase of the wall paintings of the monastery of Philanthropinon, the murals of the monastery of Aghios Nikolaos Tzora, monumental ensembles and icons of Cretan School, as well as monumental decorations of the second half of the 17th century century in the region of Tzoumerka and the Thessalian Agrafa are recognized as the main pictorial sources from which Nikolaos derives. At the same time stylistic connection with monumental ensembles of the wider region of Epirus is detected. The third chapter presents and examines briefly two contemporary ensembles, which share similar iconography and almost identical stylistic traits to the extent that they refer directly to Nikolaos' work. All three fresco decorations form a coherent group with common origins. In the fourth chapter there is a brief overview of the wall decorations that took place a few years later, in the first 20 years of the 18th century in the city of Arta. When compared to Nikolaos’ work, they differentiate considerably in terms of style. Their distinct stylistic differences imply that the first years of the 18th century were a focal point not only for the economic development of the city but also for its artistic production. The last chapter outlines the character of the wall-paintings of the Seltsou monastery and at the same time points out the contacts of the painters who work in the city of Arta during the early 18th century with Ionian painting. This parameter appears to shape a new state of artistic creation, reflected in the frescoes of the city only a few years after the end of the Sixth Veneto-Ottoman War (1699).
Institution and School/Department of submitter: Πανεπιστήμιο Ιωαννίνων. Φιλοσοφική Σχολή. Τμήμα Ιστορίας και Αρχαιολογίας
Subject classification: Άρτα (Ελλάδα) -- Ναοί
Keywords: Μεταβυζαντινή ζωγραφική,Ήπειρος,Άρτα,17ος αιώνας,18ος αιώνας,Post-byzantine painting,Epirus,Arta,17th century,18th century
Appears in Collections:Διδακτορικές Διατριβές

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