The Last Judgment

folk artist

  • The Last Judgment 2
Basic information
folk artist
The Last Judgment
Date of creation
16th c.
tempera painting
wood panel tempera
Dimensions (height x width, cm)
2.15 x 1.76
Information about author
Object description
The composition of the Last Judgment was widespread in Ukraine. According to the canon of the wall painting of the interior of the wooden church, it was traditionally performed on the western wall, so that the believers, coming out after the service, could realize what awaited them after death. Icons of the Last Judgment widely reveal the picture of life of various social strata and are a kind of "people's code of morality". The plot of "The Last Judgment" by a self-taught artist from the village of Mala Horozhanka is one of the most common and at the same time the most democratic. It embodies the belief in the victory of justice, reproduced in an accessible form. The author's departure from strict iconographic techniques is noticeable, precisely the viewer can see a picture of the author's life observations, which is reflected in human characters, clothes, hands, and household details. According to the hierarchy, the composition is filled with horizontal tiers. At the top of the icon, there are rows of angels with two of them opening the sky. God the Father is depicted in the center. Below the icon, there are a number of apostles with Jesus Christ. The entire upper part symbolizes paradise. On both sides, there is a group of people from different countries, which are led by Moses to the scales of justice. Here is a large number of sinners, which by state of origin and indecent acts can be classified as social (ladies, moneylenders, judges, etc.) and common (bartenders, drunkards, adulterers, etc.) ones. In the scenes of hell, the author portrays a large number of sinners. Episodes of death of the poor and the rich are interesting enough. All scenes and some characters are accompanied by the author's inscriptions. The icon has a great number of characters well grouped in a large area. The author skillfully limits bright colors. He wittily tells the story of the time when the righteous will be approved and sinners punished. The work comes from Mala Horozhanka village in the Lviv region.