AND METHOD IN THE GREEK TRADITION
origin of Byzantine Iconography is Greek by heritage and dates
back to the 3rd century and earlier. Though iconography has grown
to include many cultural forms (such as Russian,
Serbian, Bulgarian, Armenian, etc.), the Hagia Theodora School
teaches the ancient and most original Byzantine Iconography
techniques of the Cretan, Macedonian,
Constantinopolitan and Cypriot historical regions of Greece.
These styles of Iconography are virtuosic in paint formulation and
application, often featuring 100 or more fine layers of pain-staking applied,
hand-ground egg tempera paint on the skin tones of its subjects. This
"modeling" of paint layers causes the subjects to "glow"
as refracted light travels through the many layers. The vestments
and landscapes of these icons can also feature 50 layers or more of paint.
Together with a unique, slow process of 24KT gold and varnish application,
these icons are not only truly illuminated but prove to last the tests of time... hundreds, and even thousands of
THAN AN ART, IT IS CONSIDERED A LIFESTYLE
writing of icons encompasses more than the ability to paint. We
use the descriptor "writing" as it most closely
illustrates the iconographer's task as being the
"scribe" (in image form) of the canons and traditions of
the Eastern Christian Church. To carry out this reverent and
honorable task, an iconographer must conduct his or her lifestyle
in a pious manner incorporating prayer and fasting.
Hagia Theodora School not only incorporates teachings on the
theology and symbolism of Byzantine Iconography but also spiritual
askesis (noetic exercise and discipline) to fortify a prayerful and attentive life. Lectures
are delivered by our instructor and frequent guest speakers.
A new prototype
designed by the School for the new St. Anne Melkite Cathedral
which was presented to His Eminence, Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, Prefect
of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches and Grand
Chancellor of the Pontifical Oriental Institute, Rome (at the
gates of Vatican City).
COMMEMORATION DAY OF
THEODORA THE EMPRESS AND THE BLESSING OF THE ICONS
FATHER ANTHONY SAVAS
was befitting to plan the blessing of the Iconography School on
the commemoration day of St. Theodora the Empress. Father
Anthony Savas presided at the lovely al
fresco event which was hosted by our former patron, Sylvia Manios (whose
personal patron saint also happens to be Theodora).
began with a studious gathering of guests from the St. Nicholas
Womenís Bible Study Ministry. Upon hearing Father Savasís
message on the writings of St. Paul, we closed our bibles and
gathered on the Schoolís patio.
There, Father commemorated St.
Theodora and bestowed blessings upon the icons and the School
classroom. Icons and medals where brought by students and guests
and included the newly completed St. Theodora resident icon by
We then ended our celebration with a luncheon of
exquisite and artisanal dishes, fit for an empress!
2015 the School became officially endorsed my His Eminence,
Metropolitan Gerasimos and the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of San