The Mystical Language of Orthodox Icons
Western Christian church decoration tends to place the accent on the creativity of a painter. In the Sistine Chapel, for example, a team of Renaissance painters, including Botticelli and Perugino, created a series of unbelievably beautiful frescoes including The Life of Moses and The Life of Christ. By contrast, in terms of form and design, frescoes in Orthodox churches, can look similar to Western eyes and not immediately strikingly attractive.
But step into any Orthodox church, richly decorated with frescoes, and we can be struck dumb by feelings of reverence, excitement and anticipation. These feelings arise quite spontaneously, whether or not we believe in God. Being surrounded by them, and in settings which befit them, brings both delight and a sense of peace.
This lecture will explore the beauty and mystical language of Orthodox icons and their felt presence in Orthodox Churches throughout the world. By unfolding their symbology she will bring us closer to the heart of their beauty and awaken the beauty in our own souls. There is no love without transcendence, and no transcendence without belief and trust in one, universal Truth.