Stella Tsolakidou – 1/6/13
In January 2012, Father Anthony Salzman was assigned with creating a series of icons to decorate the ceiling of the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Sophia in New London, Connecticut. The priest from Athens, Georgia, recently surveyed the canvasses he has painted so far to make sure everything will be ready for October, when the icons will be installed.
Byzantine iconography is a particular way of the Christian faithful to express their religious messages and beliefs through art. The first examples date back to about 300 AD and soon were turned into a means of the Church to teach the word of God to the less literate.
According to onlineathens.com, the project for St. Sophia covers an area of about 37-by-67 feet and depicts parables in the Bible and the likeness of the Apostles, the Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ. Smaller round canvases painted with the prophets to foretell the virgin birth and the second coming of Christ were also created on canvas featuring the city of New London, the church at St. Sophia and Connecticut’s U.S. Coast Guard Academy.
Father Anthony has a Masters of Divinity from the Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, and studied Byzantine Iconography and Byzantine Art History in Thessaloniki, Greece. He is the priest of St. Philothea Greek Orthodox Church, in Athens Georgia and the OCF Coordinator for the Metropolis of Atlanta and the Southeast Region.