About Ioan Popei
Ioan Popei was born in Agapia, Neamt county, Romania, on July 15th, 1954. His first exhibition was in Piatra Neamt in 1985. His religious icons were very well received abroad also, in France, Holland, UK, Belgium and Australia. As every other mystery, Popei’s one is simple: faith and a leaning towards the depth of the being, there where the limitless creative powers come from. Ioan Popei does not paint icons, he prays.
About Ioan’s oil paintings:
“As for panel painting,the painter Ioan Popei uses the therapeutical quality of colors, irrespective of the chosen themes.The artist makes me think that probably he himself is charmed by his own paintings”
The art critic and Counsellor of the
Department of Culture and Art of Piatra Neamt,
Professor Lucian Strochi
About Ioan’s religious icons:
Ioan Popei’s orthodox icons on wood are but splints of the Holy Tree. Popei’s christian icons are painted directly with beams of light.
Prof. Lucian Strochi, art critic
In front of Ioan Popei’s orthodox icons the man does not feel overwhelmed by the idea of sacrifice, yet, rediscovers the triumph of life. He comes close to the moving verse of Eminescu “Faith paints the icons in the curches”.
Valentin Ciuca, art critic
“I cannot thank God enough for allowing me to paint icons…”
How an icon is made:
Popei uses either ancient or new wood. New wood must dry for 6 months in a place without moisture. After the wood is dry, it is tested with high temperatures. Thus it is insured that the wood does not crack later. Ancient wood is strengthened. It is submitted to a special treatment against insects and for insulation. The surface is prepared with different substances. The artist uses metal thin paper for the golden and silver colors.
Honors and Awards:
– First prize for the best portrait
– The Great Award of the Botosani Creation Camp
– The prize for portraits – The Arthur Verona Competition
– First prize for the best landscape oil painting – Sibiu
– First prize for the best colourist – Romania
1985 – 2004 – Exhibitions in Romania
1991 – United Kingdom
1992 – Bayonne in France
1995 – Rotterdam in Holland
1996 – Ridderkerk in Holland
1997 – Den Hag in Holland
1998 – Den Hag in Holland
1999 – Melbourne in Australia
2000 – Rotterdam in Holland
2002 – Vienna in Austria
2003 – Munchen in Germany