American Byzantine

About the film:

"American Byzantine" traces the roots of Christianity in some of the art and architecture of the Byzantine era as the historical context for understanding both the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, which houses America's largest collection of contemporary Christian art, and one of the largest religious art commissionings of the late 21st century – a 38 ton, 750 square foot marble bas relief known as the "Universal Call to Holiness."

From the artist's preliminary sketches through the rendering by hand of the sculpture in marble carving sheds nestled at the foot of the mountains in northern Italy to its final installation in one of the ten largest churches in the world, "American Byzantine" documents the five-year journey of this unusual piece of art.

Filmed on location in Istanbul, London and a number of locations in Italy, "American Byzantine" features insights from author, historian and Byzantine expert, John Julius Norwich, Honorary Chairman of the World Monuments Fund; Italian mosaics expert Wanda Frattini Gaddoni, author and former University of Bologna professor; and many others.

Kristin's credits:

Co-producer, scriptwriter and lead researcher.
Co-produced with Martin Doblmeier of Journey Films Inc.


Silver Screen Award for Outstanding Creativity
US International Film & Video Festival

Gold Award
WorldFest Houston

The reaction:

"Nicely blends art, history, architecture and religious sentiment... a most interesting program."

Gerri Pare, CNS

"’American Byzantine’ takes a look at the massive marble relief as well as a church whose 60 ethnic chapels already are filled with iconography representing millions of immigrants to the united states."

Patricia Brennan, The Washington Post

"Professionally executed, informative and visually appealing. watching it is an hour well-spent."

E M Gintoft, Catholic Herald

The website: