With a deep sense of responsibility and above all with respect for the sacred art of Orthodox iconography, I would like to share some of my thoughts, which clarify the ideals which drives my studio toward a high level of artistic performance.
First and foremost, my goal is to produce work of high quality. Swift, commercialized work only produces mediocrity with the sole criterion being profit. Something that does not fit in with my philosophy and principles.
The obligations and responsibilities of an iconographer who takes over the illustration of a holy church are enormous. I do not think there is a greater challenge for such an artist than taking on such a project. It is very easy to fill the walls with icons. But for me merely filling space is not significant. The most important part is the study of the church’s architecture, which will lead to a building taking on the appearance of one whole area which appears united by its surroundings. I strive to understand the interior of the church as a single composition, where all the pieces must be connected and in full color and architectural harmony. The fragmentation of the surface with multiple partitions into small and disconnected painting issues may cause disharmony and tension to the viewer-believer. The artist's work should help to achieve harmony, humility, inner peace and tranquility in order to prepare the believers for the sacrament of the Eucharist. The iconographer's work resembles that of a priest. As St. Theodosius the Hermit says, "One composes the blood of Christ and the other presents it". Iconography is a religious act. The artist's mission is to translate the images he presents into spirit in order to touch the souls of the believers with his work. Being aware of the seriousness and the importance of such a project, being a strict judge of my work, I have set as my main objective, to present a work constantly improving, which fulfills its purpose and remains faithful to the spirit and doctrine of the Orthodox Church.
But I think iconography should not be characterized by static, photocopying and sterile imitation of past images.
The artist must widen, enrich and renew constantly his work.
© Theodoros Papadopoulos. All rights reserved.