Since the fall of communism in 1991, the Orthodox Church in Albania has been miraculously resurrected. With a Christian tradition that extends back to a visit from the Apostle Paul, Albania's Orthodox Church (along with all other faiths) was completely outlawed during the 50 years of communist rule. The faith was kept alive during this dark time by brave and faithful Albanians who practiced the faith at great risk to themselves and their families.
Getting caught with an icon in your house meant a long prison sentence for you, and ostracism for your family. Despite this risk, many people kept irreplaceable icons that were centuries old hidden in their homes, thus saving them from destruction.
Although many icons were saved, the development of a new generation of iconographers was not. Tragically, as with the priests of Albania, more than a generation lost the opportunity to learn their skills from the previous masters. Because of state suppression of all religion, no schools or tutoring of iconography were allowed, by law, during this time (1945-1991).
Now, with the freedom that Albania enjoys, a new generation of iconographers are learning and dedicating themselves to this important art form. Petro Lufta is one of these talented young iconographers. Because of the growing interest in his remarkable work, this web site has been created to bring a sampling of his work to interested patrons around the world. Our objectives are to introduce Petro, show you his work through photo galleries, tell you something of the history of iconography in Albania, and explain how to order an icon from Petro.
Please continue to view the rest of the web site. May God bless you and thank you for coming!