‘Christian Icons’ at Frame Gallery
Frame Gallery is hosting a reception with conversation for their upcoming show, “Christian Icons,” written by Sr. Eliseea Papacioc 5–6:30 p.m., Friday, Oct. 21. The Rev. John Runkle and Martha Keeble, icon writer and teacher will discuss the icons on display and information about icon writing. The public is welcome to attend. Several icons will be for sale and commissions for new work are available.
Sister Eliseea Papacioc is an internationally-known iconographer and a nun in the Romanian Orthodox Church. From her home in the village of Bradetu, located in the foothills of central Romania, Sr. Eliseea creates an impressive portfolio of icons, several of which have been exhibited in Moscow, Beijing and New York.
For many centuries, icons have played a significant role in the spirituality of Christians in the Eastern Orthodox Church, serving more than as simply religious paintings, but as windows into the divine. In recent years, icons have grown in popularity and spiritual significance for many in the Western Church. According to journalist Andreea Câmpeanu, “Sr. Eliseea’s iconography has caught the attention of experts and enthusiasts around the world as much for its exquisite detail as for its unique style.”
Sr. Eliseea was raised in a devout Orthodox family, during the mid-20th century when the ruling communist regime attempted to crush Christianity and all who practiced the faith in Romania. Both her father and uncle were imprisoned. Her father, an Orthodox priest, did not survive imprisonment and her uncle, an Orthodox bishop, suffered lifelong disabilities. Sr. Eliseea, her mother and brother endured severe ostracism and deprivation during this period of communist oppression. After the fall of communism in Eastern Europe and the rebirth of the Orthodox Church and the spiritual arts, she and other Romanian artists were discovered by the West.
The Smithsonian Institute first brought Sr. Eliseea to the United States to take part in its annual Folklife Festival in 1999. Soon thereafter, she returned to the US and has several exhibits at the John Paul II Cultural Center in Washington, D.C. Her patronage has expanded to include not only museums and churches, but also private commissions.