Angel with a censer and a candle by Michael Vrubel

Angel with a censer and a candle by Michael Vrubel

In Kiev, Vrubel enthusiastically engaged in religious painting. He restored the ancient frescoes of the Church of St. Cyril, made several murals on the walls of the church. Among the works of that time is a small image of the Angel. In Greek, the word “angel” means “messenger”. The incorporeal messenger in the human form of a young man with wings behind his back communicates to people the will of God and helps to fulfill it.

Vrubel strikingly showed the incorporeality of the Angel. Thin white clothes, enveloping his camp, are permeated with air, light, sky blue. A light weightless

gait is similar to the smooth movement of a cloud. Under his feet, the density of the earth is not felt. Behind is the infinite blue of the cosmos. In the right hand of the Angel is a burning candle: the Divine light that he bears to the people.

In the left – a censer on the golden chain freed from gravity: with its fragrant smoke the breath of pure faith spreads. The Vrubel angel had a swarthy face, marked by the features of the East, dense blue-black hair, slightly reclined by a headwind. The look of his huge eyes under the long curved eyebrows is incomprehensible, thoughtful and meek.

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