Does every picture tell a story? Well, this one does.
I've long been intrigued by the fact that this is the Orthodox icon of the Resurrection, and so in the range of icons for feats, this represents Easter. How come?
Orthodox theology demanded that no icon could be formed from imagination. Each picture must be a likeness, something actually seen by eye-witnesses. But the Resurrection was observed only by the dead. The get-out clause is that when the Temple Veil was rent in two and so on, the dead came out of their graves and spoke to the living. For the faithful, this is the image they described. The
other intriguing thing about this icon is that it's a narrative.
Jesus descended to Hell. He broke the gates of Hell. He rose and lifted up Adam and Eve. It's all there is the icon told by the results: the broken gates under the feet of Jesus; the open graves of Adam and Eve; risen Jesus raising them up.