Archbishop Borys Gudziak virtually attends funeral of the iconographer Ostap Lozynsky: the Lord has called one of his special evangelists
Ukrainian artist, Ostap Lozynsky, died in Lviv on January 6. He was 38 years old. He graduated from the Ivan Trush Lviv College of Decorative Arts and the Lviv National Academy of Arts. Ostap was an icon painter, collected works of ancient Ukrainian art, admired Hutsul folk culture, and had a large collection of Hutsul icons on glass.
His works have been presented at international exhibitions. Since last May, the exhibit of the sacred art of the ICONART Gallery has been showcased at the Metropolitan Residence of the Philadelphia Archeparchy (http://iconart.com.ua/ua/buy-art#!/Exhibition-in-Philadelphia/c/89646670). It featured several works by Ostap Lozynsky in the style of a folk icon: The Savior, St. George, the Virgin and Child. Most visitors noticed an icon Flight to Egypt. “I tried to include the features of warmth and family. In this icon, the Holy Family flees to Egypt with their dog. It would seem like a small element, but in my opinion, it makes this icon relatable,” Ostap noted in a short film about the exhibit.
In the fall of 2021, his exhibition DE ANIMA took place in the ICONART gallery in Lviv.
“Anima-Soul: We all have it. We all talk about it, think about it, but we don’t know anything… When and where does it appear? Where does it fly, how much does it weigh? In this project, I tried to contemplate these questions. Of course, I do not have the answers, I do not know what the soul looks like, but I sincerely believe that our souls have a purpose, and in our earthly life, we have, despite all interpretations and misreadings, to do everything so that our SOUL can ascend.” This is how the artist described his project.
Friends and colleagues from different countries gathered at his funeral, which was held in the chapel of the Ukrainian Catholic University, which Ostap and Ivanka Dymyd painted together. For those who could not get there, the funeral was live-streamed. Metropolitan Borys Gudziak also joined from the United States. He expressed his condolences to family and friends and spoke about his first acquaintance with Ostap in the winter of 1988. “I was happy to meet him when he was five years old. It was the Sunday before Lent, February 1988. I had the opportunity to meet his parents and their milieux, to get acquainted with a small domestic Church, a community of people who seek freedom, seek beauty and do not only think about it, but create with their participation, prayer, and words future independent Ukraine and a free Church.”
The Metropolitan also said that Ostap was seven years old when he gave a short interview to American journalists, for whom Borys Gudziak served as a translator. They were reporting on the first free Easter of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, and the boy was already sharing what he was learning to paint “in the Ukrainian folk style.
“Today we thank God for this man who strived to be free, generous, ad honest, who was learning and teaching us about the search for God, communication, beauty, good taste, and pure joy. Now we should roll up our sleeves to continue work that what Ostap has started” stated Archbishop Borys to those gathered at the funeral.
The Philadelphia Archeparchy expresses its condolences to the family and friends of Ostap Lozynsky and is grateful for his icons, particularly for the Nativity of Christ icon, which was used as last year’s Christmas card of the Archeparchy and had graphic designs which Ostap personally contributed.