Symeon lives in Canada. He goes on pilgrimage collecting local-colour earths, works in his studio creating colourful pigments, and makes art.
I’ve wanted to visit the Kootenay Paint Pots since I first read about them a decade ago—and last week I did! Since a conference at the Banff Art Centre was bringing me to Alberta, I took the opportunity to cross into Kootenay National Park, and visit the Paint Pots on three different occasions. Arriving in Calgary early in the … Read more
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“[Symeon] comes across as a really beautiful and knowledgeable and dedicated person. You can see in him what art must have meant in so many cultures in the pre-modern period.” —Fr. Dan Donovan, St. Michael’s College.
It’s only after a pilgrimage has been blessed with a handful of earth, and inspiration has breathed on it to become pigment colour, that my work as an iconographer begins.
I use the local colours to make my paint and create an icon. Finding the form for a saint in a place’s soil and minerals is very special—and success depends both on relating to that person as well as to the earth. The stylistic vision for an icon that is in harmony with our culture has been a long journey for me, but is one that I feel has been rewarding in offering a glimpse of what a North American style of iconography might develop into.