Saturday, July 20, 2013

Pope Benedict on Word and Image

I just came across this today and thought it would be worth sharing. It is Pope Benedict's address at the conclusion of his Lenten retreat. In this brief address Benedict talks about the connection between word and image, through the greek word "logos":

It came to my mind that the medieval theologians translated the word “logos” not only as “verbum” (word) but also as “ars” (art): “verbum” and “ars” are interchangeable. For the medieval theologians, only in the two words together does the whole meaning of the word “logos” appear. The “Logos” is not only mathematical reason: the “Logos” has a heart, the “Logos” is love. Truth is beautiful, truth and beauty go together: beauty is the seal of truth.

You can find the translated message from Zenit here.

Or if you read Italian, here on the Vatican website you can find the original.

As an artist called to share the faith through art, this excerpt is very rich and worth further reflection. Especially interesting is the connection between the scriptures, the "word of God" and sacred art with its themes from the Bible and from Catholic tradition (tradition both with a capital "T" and lowercase "t"). Word and image are complementarity in God's revelation.

St. John's Gospel states:

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." John 1:1


"And the Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us, and we saw his glory, the glory as of the Father’s only Son, full of grace and truth." John 1:14 (my blog url!)

Jesus is the Word of God and the true Image of the Father. Word and image in this sense are complementary and mutually illuminative, together giving a full sense of the same reality, of "logos". It is not suprising then the fruitful marriage between the scriptures and art. Many of the most powerful works of art are born from this marriage.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Marian Sculpture

I think this is about as finished as this sculpture of Mary I've been working on this past year in my sculpture class. Hopefully later I can get some better quality photos as all but one of these pictures is blurry. I haven't taken exact measurements but this sculpture, or study, but it is not very large. I'd say it's several inches over a foot tall.

Progress on Ecorche

I have made some progress these past few days adding muscles to the skeleton I've modeled. On one side of the figure I'm going to build up to the muscles you can see on the surface and on the other side I'm adding some deeper layers of muscle or muscles that are not completely visible on the surface. If you can't tell the figure is a crucifix. A great meditation on the body of Christ...bone by bone and muscle by muscle.

Some figure studies from this year.

As I've been in Florence I haven't been great at updating my blog. After the prolonged silence I am finally getting around to putting some work up. In this post I'm sharing some drawings from my figure drawing class this past year.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Studies for a Marian sculpture

Here are some prepratory drawings, or studies, for a Marian sculpture we are working on in one of my classes that I thought I should share:

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Sono tornata a Firenze

I have successfully obtained by student visa (not without some difficulty from the New York Consulate, mind you) and have returned to Florence. Thanks be to God. Just thought I should briefly update my readers on my status.  I have just days ago moved into my friend's apartment, here is  our view of the Cathedral out of our living room window (it looks much closer and larger in real life):

Still getting settled back in, please pray for me that the process of obtaining my Permesso di Soggiorno goes smoothly and that God gives me the grace to focus and apply myself so I get the most out of this opportunity.

Sometime I need to write more in-depth about the way that God brought me here, but for now at least here's a brief update.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Brief update and a study of Zurbaran.

I'm currently writing from the Syracuse bus terminal on my way down to NYC. I had to come back to New York to take care of my student visa. My appointment with the Italian Consulate is tomorrow so please say a prayer that it all goes smoothly!

Here I'm posting a paint study (oil) of a Zurbaran I did as I was working to build up my portfolio for my application for the course in Italy in Sacred Art and Craft I'm enrolled in. Here is where I drew it in monochromatically (sorry that the photo is a bit blurry):

And here is the finished painting:

I basically just tried to copy what I saw. I really really admire Zurbaran's work and I believe that by copying some of his paintings I'll come to a better understanding of his style and the richness of the content of his works and hopefully apply that "absorbed" knowledge to my own original work. If I come across the painting I copied online maybe I'll post that too.