Worshipping with the Saints,
here and now.
The Conestoga Iconographic Studio exists with a mission to root the experience of God in the time and place in which we live. It does this by creating icons with a simple style and in a way that is holy.
Its icons’ style aims to reveal the world as radiant with the light of its Creator within an American context. In the village of Conestoga (like much of the West), such a vision of the world full of glory is undeveloped. This style is simple, grounded in the belief that simplicity is the natural resolution of complexity. Lines are bold and calligraphic. Colour is frank and contrasted like a puzzle, while clothing is abstracted towards the geometric. In such icons, the saints and feasts of the Church are experienceable examples of a transfigured in Christ and present in the new world.
The way each icon is made embodies a revelation received from the land. Everything needed for the work is foraged in a faithful knowing of the local landscape. Trees are harvested with thanksgiving to build wooden panels. Dirt and plants are received as gifts to make pigments for colour. The farming of chickens and bees is done with love and provides paint and varnish.
While Symeon paints each icon himself, the studio is a small community business. Both family and friends support the studio with gifts of money and labour. Together, our work continues in the faith that God provides everything needful.
Find out more about commissioning an icon for your church or home. Click here to read more.
Paper icons are part of a more recent tradition within the church. Found in the private cells of modern saints, they profoundly enter our daily lives in the collections they form in our homes. They offer an iconographic portal to heaven in a way that can be very dear in our prayers. Often given as tokens of generosity and love to friends and children, they are the embodiment of God’s freely given love even in their unassuming simplicity.