Iconofile is an international initiative whose goal is to increase the understanding of icons and at the same time preserve icons -- especially religious and sacred art of Byzantine influence -- which are part of the cultural heritage of all humanity.
Iconofile was established in January 2002 to publish a collection of images of sacred visual art (especially portable icons). A part of its founding vision was to develop an extensive resource for painters, conservators, restorers, and others interested in icons to learn and understand icon painting and, in general, historical creative techniques used to make sacred works of art. A decision was made early on to use the worldwide web as the medium to accomplish part of this objective. Since then our vision has grown and we have a valuable resource on the Internet and in print for all those interested in icons and sacred visual art.
Iconofile is a non-profit public benefit corporation organized under the Nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation Law (State of California) for public and charitable purposes. The organization received status as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization from the Internal Revenue Service in 2003. The corporation provides: educational programs about icons and sacred visual art; resources and financial support to museums and cultural organizations for the purpose of preserving and restoring icons, wall paintings, mosaics, statues, reliquaries, manuscripts and other forms of sacred visual art; and assistance to contemporary artists creating icons and sacred visual art.
In 2003, we began publishing Iconofile -- the journal of icons and sacred art. The Journal offers some of the finest articles, book and multimedia reviews, and detailed information regarding icons and sacred visual art available anywhere in English. Iconofile is an A4-size (8.3 x 11.7 inches) quarterly publication with 32-48 pages -- most containing full-color plates of icons and wall paintings in each issue.
The web site is the focus of Iconofile¡¯s mission, which is to publish a large collection of digital images of icons and to promote understanding and education of icons, iconology and iconography. Iconofile is seeking donations and grants to allow it to propagate knowledge and use of icons in everyday life. Funds that Iconofile generates will be used to help museums and cultural organizations in Russia (and later other countries) to acquire, conserve and restore icon paintings, religious artifacts and church monuments. To this end, Iconofile¡¯s goal is to directly generate revenue for museums and organizations in Russia by selling usage rights to high-resolution digital images of icons and other artifacts in their respective collections.
Iconofile reaches people worldwide with the quarterly print magazine, Iconofile -- the journal of icons and sacred art. The journal is concerned with the ideas, symbols and practice that define the unique role and properties of icons and sacred visual art.
Iconofile entered agreements with two major provincial museums in Yaroslavl, Russia to publish their entire icon collections on Iconofile. Iconofile is working to establish formal agreements with private collections of images to publish them through its web site. In addition, the Center for Information Technologies of Yaroslavl State University has agreed to provide web site and database programming, technical support and Russian language text for the digital image collection.
How you can help Iconofile
Organization of the Iconofile Web Site
The web site is organized into six sections: Collection, Learning, Forum, Events, Guide and a Store. Each section provides useful information and services to both visitors and members. It is our goal to provide highly specialized information not readily available elsewhere for iconographers, icon painters and people interested in icons and sacred art, so as to make membership to Iconofile both desirable and cost effective.
An important aspect of Iconofile#39;s mission is to create a depository of images of sacred art--not just portable wood icons, but frescoes, relief carvings, sculptures, embroidered icons. In fact, for this reason Iconofile was formed; to create an online database of images to give them the widest possible accessibility to people all over the world.
The Iconofile Imagebase, to be accessible through this web site, will be a depository of icon images, their text description from different sources with an analysis of subject and iconographic traditions. Publishing the Imagebase on an Internet web site will ensure rapid searches using text and visual indexes.
Learn more about the Imagebase
The members-only section is a resource area for Iconofile members. It features an electronic magazine, Iconofile eJournal, published semi-monthly with an archive of past issues on all aspects of icons. Iconofile members access all issues in the archive.
Iconofile is seeking content (both text and images) for the Iconofile eJournal. If you have original material about icons and sacred art available for publication, we would like to publish it as part of the Iconofile eJournal. If you provide content full credit will be given to you, and a link provided to your web site.
Submit articles and photos
The Forum section is a place to ask questions, get answers and join others in many online discussions about icons and sacred art. We invite all visitors to Iconofile to visit the forum, and register as a member of the forum to post questions, answers and share their experience and knowledge in the forum#39;s topics.
Register for the Iconofile Forum
The Events section contains a calendar of events regarding icons and sacred art. This section is accessible to all visitors, and visitors can post items in the events calendar. You can publish your icon-related event in this section. Iconofile accepts relevant icon and sacred art-related events for the calendar.
The Guide section contains a resource guide to icon painters, muralists and other artists working in various medium and formats in the creation of icons and sacred art. Do you offer services and products for icon painters? Do you restore or collect icons? Do you conduct workshops? Do you teach or apprentice icon-painting students? Have your business or listing published here.
Submit your listing for the Iconofile Resource Guide
The online Store offers products specifically for iconographers and icon painters, and merchandise for all others interested in icons. We will also provide an online marketplace where Iconofile members can sell icons and other products, such as used books and other products through the store. The store provides revenue for Iconofile to support the web site and its programs.
Iconofile is seeking products for artists, conservators and restorers to distribute through the Iconofile online store. We are also seeking unique merchandise that may be of interest to all people with an interest in icons. If you have any recommendations for the store or know where we can obtain such products, please let us know.
Recommend items for the Iconofile store