Creative expression is a process in which one touches spirituality continually, for in creativity we begin to know the Creator. As we share the beauty and manifestation of new ideas and forms we explore the potential of ourselves and see the greater self. Art is not a metaphor for creation, it is the continuation of its presence. I most fervently want to impart the spirit of joyous union that comes from the concentration on this spiritual and beautiful journey.

Since my early teens, I have been interested and active artistically. Initially I was sketching, doing basic carpentry and tailoring, each tutored or encouraged by my family. Gradually it became a part of my interests that occupied much of my time and my apparent interest became more of my focus.

Since that early interest, four decades ago, I have produced a large and varied volume of works. The archive and collection of my works include: More than one thousand Liturgical Vestments, and at least the same number of watercolors, as well as a thousand prints. Throughout the years of study in undergraduate and graduate school I explored and worked in metals, ceramics, oil paintings, acrylic painting, and sculpture, these were accomplished together with watercolors and fabric works. For more than two decades these and other art works occupied my time, accompanied my teaching career, and my vocation as an Augustinian Brother.

As I grow and mature in my adult life all of these artistic activities are companions in developmental skills, technical skills, and intellectual growth. My yearning for greater depth and authenticity emerges and is fueled by spiritual life.

In the last twenty years I am inviting my spirit voice to emerge through painting, and iconography. My productivity is self-propelled, and I am choosing to channel as much as possible through myself by working and creating artworks. The sheer volume of time and focus begins to polish and refine my many projects.

Gradually and continuously I am beginning to be more the expression, rather than the maker of expressions. In so saying I am describing a Transformative process that was begun in my spiritual and artistic foundations that evolved into the path I have certainly begun to follow instinctively at this time. The seeking within, and liturgical education that harvested in my ordination to the priesthood was significantly instrumental in all that I do now.

My “style” or manner of expression is an ever-changing image that grows simpler, and visually more accessible to the viewer. I am in a constant activity with respect to one or the other of my artistic expressions. Like prayer, it is now an entirely integrated part of my personal and professional commitment.

Curriculum vitae
Richard Gerald Cannuli, OSA
 born 2 February, 1947


Father Richard Cannuli has been a consecrated Augustinian religious since 1970.  He was ordained a Roman Catholic priest in 1999.   In 2010, he was granted bi-ritual faculties in the Maronite rite (Ecclesia maronitarum), an Eastern Catholic Church in full communion with the Holy See of Rome. 



1978, MFA, Master of Fine Arts, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, New York, USA
1973, Bachelor of Fine Arts, Villanova University, Villanova, Pennsylvania, USA

1978 to present, Faculty Member of Villanova University, Villanova, Pennsylvania, USA
                         Director, Villanova University Art Gallery, Villanova University
                         Curator of Villanova University Art Collection
Full Professor of Studio Art since ­­2000
Eleven Years, Chair of Department of Studio Art, History of Art, and Music
Five Years, Chair of Department of Theatre, Studio Art, and Music


Father Richard Cannuli is truly a Renaissance man.  His work spans many medium.  He trained as a painter and printmaker.  He works in and teaches watercolor, oil painting, printmaking, and icon painting.

As a professional artist, he has designed and worked with stained glass windows, fabric, mosaic, and liturgical furniture.  He is a Certified Liturgical Design Consultant and has assisted cloistered religious communities with their choir and chapel spaces.
He conducts workshops on the painting of icons, and he lectures world-wide on liturgy and the arts.

He has exhibited his watercolors in Italy, Spain, China, Russia, Belarus, and Greece—as well as throughout the United States of America.  He has curated, judged, and organized exhibitions of art, as well as participated in round-table discussions.  Working with specialists from Russia and Belarus, he has consulted on determining the symbolism of antique icons.  In 1985, he began his formal training as an iconographer and continues his studies with a Master Iconographer.  His icons have been commissioned by parish communities and private individuals, and on behalf of Villanova University, his icon, “Do Not Weep for Me Mother,” was presented to His Beatitude and Eminence Patriarch Nasrallah Peter Sfeir.  One of his icons was recently accepted into the permanent collection of the Holy Monastery of Saint Catherine at Sinai, Egypt.