Archon News

Webinar Explores History of Hagia Sophia, Preservation of Its Holy Icons, and the Significance of Its Conversion

This webinar is essential viewing for anyone who reveres the holy icons of Hagia Sophia and mourns its recent conversion to a mosque. Four academics deeply versed in the history of Hagia Sophia and its glorious sacred art examine the work that was done to restore the holy icons while the building was a museum, and the wider importance of its return to mosque status. They shed fascinating light on the work done by the Byzantine Institute of America between 1931 and 1949 to save the holy icons and display them in the best possible manner.

Hagia Sophia: The History of the Building and the Building in History

This webinar brings together scholars who have actively promoted research on the Hagia Sophia and will cover historical facts, Dumbarton Oaks’ involvement, and the issues related to the recent reconversion of the monument.


Ioli Kalavrezou (Harvard University), “Dumbarton Oaks, Hagia Sophia, and Its Historical Mosaics”

Robert Nelson (Yale University), “Hagia Sophia: A Modern Monument?”

Bissera Pentcheva (Stanford University), “Hagia Sophia and the Liquidity of Light and Sound”

Tugba Tanyeri-Erdemir (University of Pittsburgh), “Reconquest of Hagia Sophia: Official Discourse and Popular Narratives”


Elizabeth Bolman (Case Western Reserve University)

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