First Hand: Theodore Poulakis

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Theodore Poulakis, Icon with the Ascension of the Prophet Elijah and Scenes From His Life (circa 2nd half of 17th century), oil and gold on wood, 74-1/4 x 48-1/2″; courtesy the Byzantine and Christian Museum, Athens, Greece

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Theodore who? you might ask, and even scholars versed in the byways of Byzantine art might have a hard time pinning down the name. But Poulakis (1622-1692)–a painter hailing from Crete but whose professional life was spent in Venice–is a staple of the Byzantine and Christian Museum in Athens. Or, rather, it’s the quartet of fiery steeds that steals the show from the miracle worker who is, ostensibly, the focus of the painting.  You’d have to look to Delacroix or Blake to find horses possessed of similar muscle, majesty and purpose.

© 2019 Mario Naves

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