Sankir Board

Sankir Board

Traditional Christian Iconography

All icons are executed in the most traditional method, using canons dating back to the Byzantine era. The materials, which are the same as those used centuries ago are all natural: gesso made with chalk powder and rabbit skin glue, egg tempera paint made with dry pigments and egg yolk as a binder.

The work begins with a wooden board to which is glued a linen cloth, which is then covered with a dozen or so layers of gesso. The gesso is then sanded to a silken surface. After the image has been traced on the panel, the painting process can begin. Once the color scheme has been decided, the base colors are applied. The successive layers will go from dark to light, thus representing man's spiritual path. There is no indirect source of light in an icon. All the lights on garments and flesh come from within. This technique, together with the use of "reverse perspective" allows the icon to be felt as a window, opening to another reality. Through this very specific language the iconographer's responsability is to represent the two natures of Man, the human and the divine, that confers icons their unique quality which is their ineffable sense of presence.

"Thus the icon is not a representation of the Deity, but an indication of a participation of a given person in Divine life."  
                                                                                                                                    - Leonid Ouspensky


Chantal Heinegg - CV

Chantal Heinegg was born in Paris, France. Drawing and painting were always part of her life and interests. She moved to the United States in 1980. Starting her education in icon writing at the School of Sacred Arts in the early 1980's, she pursued her search for a deeper understanding of iconography and what she could feel was a real calling. After studying with different teachers, she established a steady mentor/student relationship with iconographer Marek Czarnecki of Meriden, CT, with whom she still continues her iconographic training.


  • School of Sacred Arts, New York 1985-1987
  • Ateliers Goujon (gilding restoration), Paris  1993
  • Institut Saint Serge (weekly classes with Elisabeth Ozolin), Paris 2005-2006
  • Seminars and weekly classes with Marek Czarnecki, Meriden, CT 2008-present
  • Saint Tikhon Monastery (seminars with Xenia Prokovsky) New Canaan, PA 2009-10
  • Pilgrimage to churches and monasteries of the Golden Ring, Russia 2010
  • Santuario dei SS. Vittore e Corona (Alma Lorenzi seminar) Feltre, Italy, 2011
  • Santa Maria della Vita (Giancarlo Pellegrini seminar) Sogliano al Rubicone, Italy 2011
  • Casal de Pau (Giancarlo Pellegrini seminar) Barcelona, Spain 2013
  • Monastere Ste. Claire de Nice (Giancarlo Pelligrini seminar) Nice 2011-12
  • Laboratorio Santo Damiano (Alexander Stalnov seminars) Florence 2012 - 2013
  • Santuario Santa Maria della Guardia (Alexander Stalnov seminar) Genoa, Italy 2013


  • Exhibition St. Patrick and St. Anthony Parish Gallery, Hartford, CT 2011
  • Exhibition "Silence" at The Golden Thread Gallery, West Hartford, CT 2013
  • Lecture "An Introduction to Iconography" St. Augustin's Parish, Larchmont, NY 2013
  • Exhibition and Lecture "Sacred Silence: The Practice of Iconography" Brother Kenneth Chapman Gallery, Iona College, New Rochelle, NY 2014
Chantal At Work.jpg