What an unexpected year!

When 2020 started, I am sure, everybody was in their usual bustle: doing research, writing papers, planning conference trips. Some our plans for the year, I dare say most, did not came to pass – at least not the way we imagined them. Our own eighth graduate workshop on The Problem of Religious Art in Modernity. Uses and Abuses of the Icon in Russia was rescheduled and replanned several times. It moved from Cologne to Vienna and finally settled in the online realm – like most events this year.

And while this cyber-world was an undiscovered country for many of us, we settled in more or less quickly. We took advantage of all the fascinating lectures, talks, and webinars that popped up all over the internet. Many events we would have otherwise missed, were suddenly just a mouse click away. A luxury that will hopefully not vanish entirely along with the pandemic.

So, despite all the hardships we wish all of you a very merry holiday season. Whatever is beautiful, whatever is meaningful, whatever brings happiness, may it be yours this holiday season and throughout the coming year. And most of all, we wish you to stay in good health.