Virtual Course: Orthodox Iconography

presented by Professor Raoul Smith

Wednesday, September 22, 9:30-11:30
Wednesday, September 29, 9:30-11:30
Wednesday, October 6, 9:30-11:30
Wednesday, October 13, 9:30, 11:30

Each class will have a short, 10-minute break and include time for Q+A. Classes will be recorded for registered students.
Members $100, Nonmember $125
Registration required by Monday, September 13. The Zoom link and any additional information will be sent out one week prior to the start of the course.

This four-part course will explore the making and spiritual underpinnings of icons, as well as the historical root of the icon. In addition to examining the most common types of Russian icons, the course will also offer a comparative look at icons from around the world and include an introduction to the Old Church Slavonic language. To view the full syllabus, click below.

Professor Raoul Smith, tenured professor of Linguistics and of Slavic Languages and Literatures at Northwestern University, is a Research Fellow at the Museum of Russian Icons, as well as the founder of the Center of Icon Studies and founder and first editor of the Journal of Icon Studies. Professor Smith organized and chaired the Museum’s first conference Icons and Iconology in 2015 in conjunction with the Center for Iconographic Studies at the University of Rijeka, Croatia. He has traveled extensively in Russia and the Balkans researching icons.



Watch this short documentary Beginnings: Vladislav Andrejev and the Prosopon School to learn about the Prosopon School of Iconography and Iconology.

CANCELED: 2021 Prosopon School of Iconography and Iconology

The 2021 Prosopon workshop has been canceled due to COVID restrictions. See below for information regarding the workshop. Dates for the 2022 class will be posted as soon as they are available.

Vladislav Andrejev has been teaching iconography since 1985, during which time thousands of his students have been introduced to the ancient art of icon writing. Over the years, Vladislav’s iconographic technique and teaching method developed into a distinct school of painting and interpretation. The Museum of Russian Icons is hosting the renowned Prosopon School of Iconology for an intensive six¬ day course on icon writing. Working with Prosopon faculty, participants will study the techniques of painting icons, including transferring of the image, applying the gold leaf, and the use of egg tempera paint. Students will use natural materials and the traditional multi¬step process to paint their own icons of Archangel Michael. Previous students can make special arrangements with the instructor to paint another subject for their icon workshop. Throughout the course, students will be introduced to iconology, iconic symbolism, and the theological and philosophical basis of each step. No previous artistic experience is required. The course takes place in the Museum’s Auditorium.

Registration Details and Policies

Course Hours: The Museum will be open to students from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. each day.

Tuition: Museum Members, $900; Nonmembers, $995. Tuition includes 36 hours of instruction over six days and all materials including the board, pigments, and gold leaf.

Thanks to the Nypro Foundation, the Museum is able to offer one scholarship to attend the workshop. The scholarship covers all tuition and fees but does not cover the cost of lodging, transportation, or meals.

Membership: Become a member to receive significant savings on tuition, plus free Museum admission and other benefits all year. Membership rates start at $25 and can be processed when you register for the course. Learn more about membership here.

A 50% deposit is required to reserve your space in the class. The balance of your registration fee must be paid by the registration deadline; if the balance is not paid and/or the registration is not cancelled by this date, the Museum reserves the right to retain all payments made and release your reserved spot to another student.

Accommodations: Lodging options may be found on the “Local Amenities” page in the “Visit” section of the Museum website.

Parking: Free street parking is available around the Museum and in a town lot on Walnut Street, half a block from the Museum.

Attire: The instructors request students wear modest attire appropriate for the study of sacred art. Specifically, please do not wear sleeveless shirts, shorts, jeans, or clothing with logos; men should not wear hats.

Lunch: There will be a daily lunch break. The Museum has a tea room with beverages and light snacks for purchase. You may bring a bag lunch (refrigeration is available), or visit one of the several restaurants located within two blocks of the Museum.

Cancellation Policy: Please read the following policy carefully before registering. In order to keep tuition prices as low as possible and to accommodate the maximum number of students, no exceptions to this policy will be made. Cancellations must be submitted in writing (via email, mail, or fax); cancellations by phone are not accepted.

Please note: We are not able to offer partial refunds, transfers, or credits for students who do not attend the full course.

Questions? Please contact Amy Consalvi at or (978) 598¬-5000 x125