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Icon Gallery- City Art Gallery

phone: 032 626 086
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On display are the best examples of icons wealth funds from the gallery's collection of Plovdiv Bishopric. They represent the Eastern Christian art from the Plovdiv region and throughout South Bulgaria by the end of the fifteenth century to the late nineteenth century.

Earliest representative works are "Jesus Christ", "The Virgin Odigitria" and "St. St. Constantine and Helena" church of the same name, dated at the end of the fifteenth - early sixteenth century. Extremely valuable are eight icons from Nessebar of the so called holiday iconostasis line of the sixteenth century, which were the work of the masters of Post-Byzantine Cretan School. Seventeenth century is also richly presented with a number of icons from Rakitovo that bring elegance and classiac spirit of Balkan art from this period.
The spirit of the Bulgarian Revival is formed in the late seventeenth century, when Christian art build a new relationship with iconography. The monasteries of the Holy Mountain Athos impose vital attitude towards illustrating the Old and New Testament, which is distributed in all orthodox temples the Balkans. The local shops become art "academy" which dictates the rules with which to comply Balkan painters. This is the time of formation of local art schools. In Bulgaria they have their own traditions of previous centuries, but the most representative and popular in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century became Samokov, Tryavna and Bansko Art School and the beginning of the nineteenth century, Edirne art school.
An icon exhibition presents works by artists such as Hristo Dimitrov and his sons Zahari Zograf and Dimitar Zograf from Samokov School. Also Tryavna masters and works of Nicolas Odrinchanin.
Path of Bulgarian pilgrims who visited the holy places like Jerusalem, Sinai Monastery "St. Catherine" and the Holy Mountain Athon can follow the presented Eruslimii and church plate. One of the most valuable and most interesting icons are copies of Athon miraculous icons like "The Holy Mother Troeruchitsa (Three-handed)" from Hilandar monastery, "The Holy Mother Portaritsi" from Iviron monastery, "The Holy Mother Slaughtered " from Vatopedi and others. They were copied from the original miraculous icons and were painted in the nineteenth century by the best masters of Bulgarian iconography.
In the Icon hall are periodically made thematic exhibitions presenting in terms of  holy icons various aspects of symbolic of the Christian art.

Summer working hours /May-October/:

9:30 – 12:30 and 13:00 – 18:00

Winter working hours /November-April/:

9:00 – 12:30 and 13:00 – 17:30

Day for a free-of-charge visit:

First Thursday of each month – for students

  • Historical period

  • Renaissance