Sunday, 25 September 2011


I move back to Oxford in 24 hours: the flat is a wilderness of boxes and miscellaneous bits of life-chaff which I am trying to sort through.

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank the Master and Fellows of Peterhouse, Cambridge, for appointing me to a Research Fellowship in 2008; my time in their company at the College has been intensely and invariably stimulating in many ways, and I take away a rich store of memories.

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Greater in Honour than the Cherubim

The mock-up/design for one of my el-cheapo Byzantine icons:

The painting, as of 2am on Sunday (today):

And a little later:

Sunday, 18 September 2011


All go here. I leave Cambridge in a week's time, to take up a Fellowship in English at an extremely nice Oxford college. Sorry for the long gap in posting: the interview, the aftermath, the packing---you know how these things are. For now, here's a very beautiful song which I have on repeat:

Having a big creative surge too. This looks like nothing much in mock-up form, but is the template for another of my oversized ikons. The final version is going to be attached to the seam between a ceiling and wall in my new college flat in Oxford.

I've just ordered the board: the straight line along the top is 100cm, which gives you some idea of the scale. The dots and yellow lines will be gilded stars and rays. The concept, of course, is to make a whole wall look as though it's all part of one vast ikon: Byzantine ikons often have the Theotokos or Christ (or, as here, both) presiding from a semi-mandala at the top.

The colours on the Virgin's maphorion will be more like this:

But her face will be like this (pretty exactly, though possibly reversed to look slightly to the left):

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