Painting: Mikolaj Siennicki (1520-1581)

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Painting: Mikolaj Siennicki (1520-1581)

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Prints available in either Matte Poster or Stretched Canvas formats.

Enrich your home, office, or congregation with a print of this painting by Student Pastor Andy Jacobs.

All revenue generated from sales of this artwork are donated to the West Wind Unitarian Universalist Congregation's General Fund, to help cover the operating costs of being a welcoming, affirming, and socially active congregation in Norman, Oklahoma.

Mikolaj Siennicki (1520-1581)

A Unitarian in the Polish Diet, he was instrumental in the passage of Poland's 1573 religious tolerance law. The most elected official to Polish government, ever, Siennicki successfully negotiated the succession of two kings. While other elected officials were given land, titles and riches for their efforts to seat the new kings, Siennicki received none of these things. Instead, as a devout Unitarian, he negotiated the religious tolerance law affording all citizens of Poland the freedom to worship without state influence. This was very rare at the time as most citizens were expected to worship the same doctrine as their king. Siennicki was famous for reading the Lord's Prayer in Polish from the Diet congress floor, a direct protest to the Roman Catholic Empire and its use of Latin for religious text.

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Siennicki is painted in the style of a Byzantine icon. While the subject matter and actual media deny the title “icon,” I used the style and aesthetic traditions of iconography to create the image. Siennicki holds the Lord's Prayer in his hand written in Polish, wears a halo that is an Ouroboros (early Unitarian symbol for unity), is speaking before the Polish Diet and is blessed in his action by the hand of God descending from the clouds. His foot crosses the gold frame boarder and his left hand offers three gold keys held together with one gold ring in an effort to include, draw in, the viewer. He is breaking the fourth wall, so to speak, so as to make the viewer a participant in the Siennicki's cause. No specific artist is attributed to Byzantine art, because it was mostly done by a group of artisans, not one individual, and are never signed.