USF's Museum Blog

Sacred Garments: Orthodox Christian Vestments from Around the World

by Lydia Webster (MA, 2017)


Lydia Webster

Editor’s note:  We congratulate the Doug Adams Gallery at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley on its June 6, 2017 opening of  stunning exhibition of Greek Orthodox vestments belonging to Metropolitan Nikitas of the Patriarch Athenagoras Orthodox Institute and thank the gallery for giving us permission to re-post this exhibition announcement.  Sacred Garments:  Orthodox Christian Vestments from Around the World, was curated by USF museum studies graduate student Lydia Webster (MA, 2017) during an internship that began in Spring 2017.  Lydia holds an undergraduate degree in Religious Studies from the University of Edinburgh and views this show as a practical embodiment of her undergraduate dissertation on the display of religious objects within museums.   –ms


Sacred Garments celebrates ten visually stunning Orthodox vestments, seeped in history, religion and tradition, custom-made for Metropolitan Nikitas, the Director of the Patriarch Athenagoras Orthodox Institute in Berkeley. Gathered over the course of Metropolitan’s service in a wide range of countries from Vietnam, China and India to Italy and to Ukraine, the vestments tell the story of Orthodox Christianity throughout the world. On display for the first time, these complex and beautiful vestments hold powerfully religious significance for the services in which they are still used today. Through examining the vestments, this exhibition highlights the questions of these garments as art, sacred items and functional clothing, while keeping their individual cultural contexts at the heart of the discussion.

Come and learn about a two-hundred-year-old tradition, passed down from third century Byzantium and kept alive around the world to this day.”

The exhibition is free & open to the public from June 6 until August 18, 2017 at:

Check out our video:

Doug Adams Gallery, 2465 Le Conte Avenue, Berkeley

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