About

The icons and devotional images featured on this website are the work of professional British artist and iconographer, Helen McIldowie-Jenkins.

 

Since the early 1990s, I have undertaken numerous commissions for cathedrals, churches, organisations and individuals in the UK and US . I am now based in West London.

Clients include Bristol Cathedral, Chelmsford Cathedral, Wymondham Abbey, the English College, Rome, the Anglican Shrine of Our Lady at Walsingham, the Turf Club, Pall Mall, St Mary’s, Harrow on the Hill and several chapels of the Woodward School Corporation.

Our Lady of Lewisham
Our Lady of Lewisham

 Unlike other icon painters, I mainly specialise in composing ‘new’ and original icons to meet the artistic needs of today’s church in terms of devotional art. The subject matter can range from saints of the early church (where no prototype image exists) to images more appropriate for use within today’s diverse and multicultural faith communities.

In addition, I continue to write archetypal Byzantine and Russian icons and study the tradition, in terms of both art historical and practical research, particularly with the Russian Schools.

I have designed icons and painted in tempera since childhood and have developed my practice with generous help and tuition  from several tutors and experts (mainly in the Russian tradition) and with Orthodox and Roman Catholic spiritual guidance. In the pursuit of my quest to understand icons and the transmission of iconography, I have travelled to many parts of Greece, Istanbul, Moscow and St Catherine’s Monastery, Sinai. My ongoing study of Italian Late Medieval panel painting (specifically 13th -14th century Franciscan painting) continues to take me regularly to central Italy.”

Westminster Abbey

Background In addition to a Fine Art diploma (St Alban’s College of Art & Design) and a fellowship to the Digswell Arts Trust (Fine Art & Ceramics), Helen holds a first class BA Honours degree in Art History and was awarded an MA scholarship by the Edmund J. Safra Foundation to the Courtauld Institute of Art, London. Her MA dissertation investigated an unusual form of 13th century Italian crucifixion iconography.

Helen has worked in museum and adult education environments, the interior design industry and is a Cataloguer at MacDougall Arts, the leading Russian Art Auction house in London for important Russian paintings, icons, Fabergé and Objet d’art. www.macdougallauction.com

Icon Adventures: Helen leads unique residential icon painting retreats in Assisi, Italy and Walsingham, North Norfolk for small groups annaully. Please visit the sister website www.iconadventures.co.uk for current availability or telephone +44 (0) 203 673 6417.