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Clemena Antonova | IWM

Clemena Antonova

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Research Director, Russia in Global Dialogue

Clemena Antonova is an art historian (M.A., Edinburgh and D.Phil., Oxford) with interests in Russian religious philosophy and, more generally, problems relating to the role of religion in modernity. She has held research positions at several institutions, including the University of Edinburgh (2007), the Royal Academy of Arts and Sciences in Belgium (2010), the IWM (2011-2013 and again in 2018), the University of Cologne (2015-2016), the University of Aix-Marseilles (2017). She continues her affiliation with the Institute for Orthodox Christian Studies at Cambridge, where she contributes to the Master’s programme.

Clemena published her doctorate as Space, Time, and Presence in the Icon: Seeing the World with the Eyes of God, (Ashgate, U.K.). At present, she is working on another monograph, “Visual Thought in the Russian Silver Age: The Religious Philosophy of Pavel Florensky,” which builds on research she did for Prof. Charles Taylor’s research focus “Religion and Secularism” at the IWM.

Latest publications:

  • “The Icon and Visual Arts at the Time of the Russian Religious Renaissance” in Pattison, G., Emerson, C. and Poole, R., (eds.), “The Oxford Handbook of Russian Religious Thought,” forthcoming.
  • “’Daring to think’ of a Non-Euclidean World: Science and Religion in Russian Critiques of the Icon,” Sobornost, 40/1, 2018. The paper has received the essay prize of the Templeton Foundation.
  • “Non-Euclidean Geometry in the Russian History of Art: On a Little-known Application of a Scientific Theory,” Leonardo, 51/5, 2018.
  • “’Everyone is responsible for everyone and everything’: Insights on the Refugee Crisis Drawn from Russian Religious Philosophy,” Sobornost, 38/1, 2016.


Former affiliations at the IWM:

  • FWF Senior Research Fellow, working for Charles Taylor’s focus “Religion and Secularism” with a project on “Pavel Florensky and the Nature of Russian Religious Philosophy.”


Previous stays at the IWM:

June 2011 – May 2013, Lise Meitner Visiting Fellow
February –April 2018, Visiting Fellow



  • Russia in Global Dialogue

    There is an urgent need for re-engagement between the Russian debate on the global future and European debate on the choices that Russia faces. With Russia’s recent return to power politics and the fears of a new Cold War, this need is even more acute.
    Read more