2006 Calendars Available
Friday, August 12, 2005, 5:06 PM

calad06 1 2006 Calendars Available

The St. James Calendar of the Christian Year 2006 is now available for pre-order on our website.  The calendars will begin shipping after Labor Day.  Quantities are limited.

Special Subscription Offer: FREE BOOK
Friday, August 12, 2005, 9:43 AM

I have not departed from the commandment of his lips; 
I have treasured in my bosom the words of his mouth.
Job 23:12

This is our prayer as Christians and publishers of Touchstone: A Journal of Mere Christianity: to always remain true to God, to use his word as the touchstone for our lives.  We endeavor to make Christ our treasure and to never depart from him. We produce Touchstone to be a resource and companion on the journey that is the Christian life for those who share our prayer.

Keeping this in mind, we would like to offer a very special and limited-time opportunity.  If you subscribe today, you will get 10 issues (1-year) of Touchstone AND a copy of The Trial of Job by Patrick Henry Reardon (Conciliar Press, 2005, 214 pages) for only $23.12 (more for foreign subscribers).

This is an offer that we have never made before and is only available to the first 100 people who take advantage of it.  You save more than 20% off the regular subscription price, and more than 50% off the cover price AND you get the book thrown in at no additional cost (a $10.95 value).

Here’s how: Click on the subscription link to the left (or here), choosing either a new subscription or a gift subscription. When you get the order form to fill out, make sure to type JOB in the box that says “special offer code.”

Iconography Event on Sept 12
Wednesday, August 10, 2005, 12:18 PM

Touchstone will be co-sponsoring the following event and will have a marketing table and editorial presence.  Please join us.

Lecture title: Visions of Salvation

A presentation of the the four most common motif groups in Byzantine iconography; depictions of Christ, The Mother of God, Saints and Festival icons.

The iconographer Solrunn Nes

Date:  Monday, Sept. 12, 7:30 PM

Place: Marmion Academy — Koch Theater
1000 Butterfield Rd.
Aurora, IL 60504-9742
Phone: 630-897-6936
Fax: 630-897-7086


Take I-88 toward AURORA - 
Take the NORTH FARNSWORTH AVE exit onto N FARNSWORTH AVE – go 1.2 mi Turn left on BUTTERFIELD RD[IL-56] – go 0.7 mi

SOLRUNN NES has represented the authentic tradition of Christian sacred art for two decades in the west.  The essence of that tradition is best expressed in the words of the Seventh Ecumenical Council (787 A.D.), which stated:

The making of icons was not the creation of the painters, but an
accepted institution and tradition within the universal Church…
The idea and tradition came from the fathers, not from the painters. 
Only the art belongs to the painter, whereas the form without doubt
comes from the fathers, who founded the Church.

In other words, the common classical heritage of Christian iconography is embedded in an objective tradition, one which is conventional, canonical, dogmatic, didactic, and liturgical.

Solrunn Nes, herself a western European and convert to Roman Catholicism, possesses a profound knowledge and love of Eastern Christianity, and can be recognized as a true representative of the tradition expressed preeminently at Nicaea II.  She studied icon painting in Finland with Father Robert de Caluwé (1983), and in Athens, at the Academy of Fine Arts under the supervision of Professor Konstantin Xinopoulos (1985), and has traveled extensively in Greece, Turkey, the former Yugoslavia, Russia and Egypt. Highly regarded as an iconographer of considerable skill in western Europe, and especially in her native Norway, where she for several years lectured at the University of Bergen, she now works as a freelance iconographer, writer, and occasional lecturer.

All her icons are striking and luminous, recognizably her own, and yet fully in accord with the objective canonical tradition. Her work — which she classifies as New Byzantinism — reveals how one committed prayerfully to the latter can nonetheless produce art of obvious creativity.  Her icons are bright, spare, free of busy-ness and visual noise", and immediate to the beholder. The icon is an expression of her faith.  The tradition in which she paints is not concerned with the subjective perception of what is true, beautiful, and good.  On the contrary, the faith of the Church is expressed through certain formal norms and with clarity of objective definition of the good and the true: it comes from God and leads to God.  The highest compliment that can be paid her work is that it inspires one to pray and to conceive a desire for the True Beauty reflected there.

She has produced two books of interest to the art historian, theologian, and layman seeking a deeper understanding of iconography.  Her lavishly illusatrated The Mystical Language of Icons is an introduction that describes in admirable detail, yet with clarity and simplicity, the technique of draughting holy images.  She shows how Eastern Christian icons are not simply religious art, as has predominated in the west since the Renaissance (that is to say, they are not merely ²pictures² of religious scenes or biblical stories), but function as liturgical, dogmatic, venerable, and prayerful objects of sacred character.  Every page of The Mystical Language of Icons is itself a work of her own iconic art, and she takes us through page after page of iconographic motifs with enlightening explanations of each.

Her other book, The Uncreated Light, is a fascinating blend of theological insight and art history.  In it she traces the depiction of the Gospels¹ accounts of the Transfiguration of Christ, revealing the various and rich iconographic emphases that theological currents and controversies spanning roughly a thousand years drew out of the event.  Pages of relevant biblical and patristic quotations round out the work, showing a deft intertwining of theological knowledge, spiritual insight, art history, and a trained detective¹s mind that picks up the subtle clues for interpretation of each work of art under her scrutiny.

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