Religious Iconography of the 19th and 20th Centuries
February 6-27, 2014
The Christoph Keller, Jr., Library
at The General Theological Seminary
440 West 21st Street (between 9th & 10th Ave)
New York City
Public viewing hours: Monday – Friday 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
On February 6, a special exhibition of religious iconography opened at The General Theological Seminary as part of a celebration honoring the retirement of the Rev. Dr. J. Robert Wright, M.Div, D.Phil., D.D., D.Cn.L. and his contributions to General Seminary, The Episcopal Church, and the Anglican Communion.
The exhibition consists of 22 icons and a number of smaller pieces selected from a private collection previously owned by Father J. Robert Wright. The religious icons and articles come from Russian, Greek, Serbian, Palestinian, and Ethiopian traditions, and the exhibition celebrates faith and tradition, artfully expressed in painting, textile and silver-work of the Orthodox churches.
Subjects range from the All-seeing Eye of God, patriarchs and prophets of the Hebrew Scriptures to depictions of events recorded in the New Testament—saints and martyrs familiar and foreign to most Western Christians. The passage from Colossians, “Jesus is the image (icon) of the invisible God,” is the inspirational source of the iconographer who makes Jesus visible. Icons invite the beholder into the immediacy of intimacy with the Holy One. They are a medium through which the beholder and the one who is depicted may enter silently into a contemplative space. Icons connect us as a people of faith worshipping in different traditions to God, our common faith tradition. They help us to see God’s story in our story—and ours in God’s story.
Preceding the opening of the exhibit on February 6, a special Evensong in the Chapel of the Good Shepherd honored GTS alumnus, His Beatitude Archbishop Nourhan Manougian, Armenian Patriarch of Jerusalem, and celebrated the conferral of an Honorary Doctor of Divinity degree upon him.