« 2022. # 5 (167)

The Ethnology Notebooks. 2022. № 5 (167), 1164—1172

UDK [7:338.45]:[904:339.5](5:477) “11/13”

DOI https://doi.org/10.15407/nz2022.05.1164

BYZANTINE TRADITIONS IN DECORATIVE AND APPLIED ART OF GALICIA AND VOLHYNIA IN THE MIDDLE AGES

CHUYKO Oleh

  • ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3713-5593
  • Associate Professor, Candidat of Arts (Doctor of Arts Studies),
  • Public Higher Education Institution
  • Vasyl Stefanyk Precarpathian National University,
  • 57, Shevchenko Str., 76000, Ivano-Frankivsk, Ukraine,
  • Contacts: e-mail: art.trivium@gmail.com

Abstract. The issue of relations between Byzantium and ancient Kyivan state, in particular such a unique region as Galicia Rus, has long attracted scholars’ attention. There is every reason to conclude that Byzantine-Galician relations developed on a generally friendly basis, due to Volhynia and Galicia, and later the united Principality of Galicia-Volhynia, belonging to the so-called «Byzantine Cultural Circle» (that is, «Byzantine Commonwealth of Nations»). To protect their Danubian possessions from nomadic attacks, rulers of the Byzantine Empire established allied relations with Galician princes.

The aim of the paper is to study specific features of decorative and applied art of Galicia-Volhynia Rus, to highlight issues of correlation between inherited Byzantine cultural norms and unique manifestations of ancient tradition.

The research methodology we have used in this study a number of specific and general scientific methods and approaches — source studies, interpretological, hermeneutic, comparative methods, systems thinking, etc.

Findings. The paper exposes some aspects of cultural interchange between the state of Galicia-Volhynia and Byzantium. We examine, analyze artistic and stylistic features of numerous handicrafts constituting Byzantine imports, define their typological scheme, analogies and the area of their circulation.

Author’s attention is drawn to the corpus of monuments, which are usually referred to as items of personal piety, including encolpion crosses, small steatite icons, pendants, marble breast crosses. We attempt to identify the mediating role of Byzantium (both the metropolis and its eastern provinces) in the artistic genesis of oriental motifs in Europe. We also refer to inter-neighborhood of medieval Rus-Ukraine with Central European states, whose art was marked by Romano-Byzantine style in combination with oriental ornamental elements.

Novelty. The study of the works of art, proves the significance of intercultural interchange, which caused the occurrence of external artistic and stylistic inspirations in the Christian cult objects and amulets attesting to the significance of the Byzantine tradition in the art of the Galicia-Volhynia Rus and its influence on the improvement of professional skills of local masters.

Ruthenian and Greek artists worked using attractive foreign specimens as models. Their artworks are characterized by a high level of skill thanks to the accumulated experience of antiquity and Byzantium. The separate group of small stone sculptures from Halych and northern Bukovyna helps to validate the scholarly reasoning about the existence of Halych school of miniature relief carving and artistic casting.

Received 5.10.2022

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