Internationally Renowned Church Architect Delivers Public Lecture at Seminary

Dr. Augustin Ioan recently presented a public lecture, “The Light Within: Sacred Space and Religious Architecture,” at the Seminary.

On Monday, March 26, 2018, at 7:00 p.m., Mr. Mateusz J. Ferens, a Lecturer on the faculty of the Saint Photios Orthodox Theological Seminary and a doctoral student at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where he is a Project Assistant at the Visual Resources Laboratory in the Department of Art History and Vice-President of the Graduate Student Forum, delivered a lecture on “The Self-Aware Image in Byzantine Art.” Icons are the most ancient form of Christian art and are, in the Eastern Orthodox Christian communities of the Balkans and the Middle East, where Christianity first flourished, closely associated with Christian theology and anthropology, that is, the Christian understanding of God and man. This point was brilliantly underscored in his lecture.

Mr. Ferens received his B.A. degree with honors and with departmental distinction in Applied Design at the California State University, San Diego, and his M.A. degree in Art History at the University of California, Riverside, where he was a Teaching Assistant. He is studying in the 2017–2018 academic year at the University of Wisconsin on a fellowship awarded by the university’s Center for Russia, East Europe, and Central Asia, which is partly funded through the United States Department of State.

His wife, Mrs. Mary Hatay-Ferens, is a doctoral student in American Literature at the University of Oregon, Eugene. His brother, the Reverend Hierodeacon Father Photii, is a monk at the Saint Gregory Palamas Monastery in Etna and a second-year student at the Saint Photios Orthodox Theological Seminary.

Mr. Ferens’s first book, Dionysius of Fourna: Artistic Identity Through Visual Rhetoric, was published in 2015 by the Center for Traditionalist Orthodox Studies at the Saint Gregory Palamas Monastery.

The Monday evening lecture was free of charge to the community.