Defense of Bachelor’s Degree Theses – the Second Day

On June 24, at the Faculty of Ecclesiastical Architecture, Icon Painting and Restoration of  Easel and Monumental Icon Painting of Tbilisi Theological Academy and Seminary, bachelor’s theses were defended in the field of Icon Painting, Restoration of Easel and Monumental Icon Painting.
The following persons were present at the defense: His Eminence Abba David Metropolitan of Alaverdi (Makharadze), Rector of TTAS Protopresbyter Giorgi Zviadadze, Vice-Rector for Education and Administration Archpriest Besarion Tsintsadze, Dean of the Faculty Archpriest Ioseb Vanidze, Head of the Department of History of Georgia Professor Sergo Vardosanidze, Head of the Rector’s Office Doctor of History Professor Eldar Bubulashvili, Head of the Department of Ecclesiastical Law Priest Longinoz Suarishvili, Spiritual Father of the Faculty, Priest Nikoloz Skhulukhia, professors,  teachers and students.
The Students of the Faculty of Restoration of Easel and Monumental Icon Painting - Tamaz Bichikashvili, Nino Sulakvelidze and Tatia Khupenia - presented both joint and individual works before the commission.
The title of the work jointly performed by the students was “The Monumental Painting of the Presentation of the Lord”. The Supervisors were Zaza Sumbadze and Mikheil Beridze. The students were inspired by the 12th-century miniature icon of Mount Sinai, as well as a fresco of the Sioni Church of Ateni, which represents the scene of the Presentation of the Lord - the All Holy Mother of God with the Savior in her hand, the Righteous Joseph, Simeon the God-receiver, and Anna the Prophet. The images of the Most Holy Mother of God, the Young Child the Savior and the Prophet Anna were performed by Tamaz Bichikashvili, the figure of the Righteous Joseph belongs to Tatia Khupenia, and the figure of Simeon the God-Receiver - to Nino Sulakvelidze. According to the other requirement of the bachelor’s thesis, the students had to mechanically damage the work in several places, and then, through restoration and conservation, restore it in its original form. The assignment was excellently fulfilled and the graduates received high praise from the members of the commission.
The students successfully accomplished the second task of the bachelor’s thesis, which was to create easel icons on the theme of “the Assyrian Fathers”. An easel icon is a kind of work that exists independently of another object, autonomously, and is completed on a moving surface (wooden board or other moving base). 
Tamaz Bichikashvili performed an Icon of Saint Ioseb of Alaverdi, Tatia Khupenia painted an icon of  Saint Ise Tsilkneli and Nino Sulakvelidze presented to the commission an icon of Saint David of Gareji. The icons are made according to the half-length images (of the 17th century) of the Assyrian Fathers depicted in the Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Ananuri. The students used the 12th-13th century techniques and manner of painting. These icons received approval from the commission members as well.
Bachelor’s degree theses were defended by the students of the Faculty of Icon Painting as well. They were Elisabeth Kheladze, Khatia Tkebuchava, Nikoloz Lomitashvili and Mariam Ghonghadze. The supervisor of the group was Lasha Vanidze. The topic of the Bachelor’s theses was “the Evangelists”. Khatia Tkebuchava painted an icon of St. Matthew the Evangelist, Elisabeth Kheladze performed an icon of  Saint John the Theologian, Nikoloz Lomitashvili presented an icon of Saint Luke the Apostle and Evangelist and Mariam Ghonghadze painted an icon of Saint Mark the Evangelist.
While working on the icons, the students used the 11th-12th century miniatures of Mount Sinai, as well as miniatures of the Gelati Four Gospels and those of Mount Athos. An important novelty for the students was the process of gilding the halos, which, according to the professionals, they coped with well.
Our goal is to to help the students develop their technical skills in the process of work and to maintain their creative inspiration, their personal and individual characteristic feature - said the teacher Lasha Vanidze.
His Eminence Abba David Metropolitan of Alaverdi, and the Rector of TTAS Protopresbyter Giorgi Zviadadze blessed the students of Bachelor’s degree and wished them further success.

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