This icon was painted in the early twentieth century in egg tempera on wood. It is from the Russian Palekh school of iconography, famous for its icon miniatures. Many icons in Russia were modeled after the original Tikhvin icon of the Hodegetria or Directress type, although the tradition is that the original Tikhvin icon of the Virgin Mother with Christ was painted by St. Luke and sent to Antioch.
This original was then taken to Jerusalem, and in the fifth century to Constantinople, where there was a church built for it. The icon disappeared from Constantinople in 1383, and was soon seen by fishermen on Lake Ladoga (Russia-Finland), floating through the air and surrounded with light. During the next century it moved of its own accord to many different places. Finally, in 1510, it came to rest at Tikhvin, where a temple was built and eventually a famous men’s monastery developed.
This copy has fine detail, a golden brightness, an intricate border, and a calm demeanor sweetly expressed with tenderness on the faces of the Lord of Life and His Most Dear Mother.