Category Archives: civablog

items in this category appear on the civa blog page

Finding the Transcendent in “Ugly Art”

by Sarah Bernhardt You’ve arrived at the door of 3636 Texas Ave. in St. Louis Missouri to take in the exhibition Ritual at the Intersect Arts Center. If you’ve come here looking for beauty at first glance you will find it. And you won’t. There are some compositions that catch the eye with an immediate pleasing… Continue Reading

Death Where is Thy Sting

by Xenia Williams A poor woman comes to a memorial service, and she reverently places on a table brought down for it an offering of Kollyva, in this case, a dish of sweetened boiled rice which will be served to the congregation after the memorial prayers for the dead are said. The priest and choir… Continue Reading

What to do with Differences: Artists and Art as a Bridge

By Isaac Tsetan Gergan, Marianne Lettieri, and Rachel Hostetter Smith Three friends, who participated in the Art for Change 2020 International Artist Residency in New Delhi, India, reflect on its theme. God designed beauty and meaning through differences Isaac: From the beginning of creation, we see differences in all aspects of God’s design: physical, emotional and… Continue Reading

Communing with Saints

by Ryan Stander A shoebox at a flea market changed my life. A simple Nike shoebox filled with discarded family photographs broke my heart. With each photograph of unfamiliar faces and disconnected stories I flipped through, I grew a deeper realization of our shared humanity and mortality. Each photograph – a certificate of someone’s life… Continue Reading

Mirrored in Mourning

by Jordan Lienhoop I was standing before two alabaster statues in the Speed Art Museum: Hooded Mourner with Rosary and Hooded Mourner with Missal. Created in the mid-1400s at the School of Jean Cambrai in France, the sculptures are encased behind glass, standing no more than two feet high. Their faces are somber, heads bent,… Continue Reading

Prayers in Paint

by Dawn Waters Baker These past 16 months have been some of the hardest of my life. I’m sure I’m not alone in this. Maybe you’ve felt that way too. I have talked to doctor and counselor friends who are seeing a significant rise in mental health across the board. Just this week I was… Continue Reading

Beyonce: A Reimagined Madonna

by Vicki Stuart            The famous Beyonce shocked her audience once again: rather than wowing them with her silky dulcet tones, however, the artist’s maternity photos caused the public uproar. In the capturing of Beyonce’s pregnancy in 2017, photographer Awol Erizku controversially reimagined the typical depictions of the Mother Mary and challenged socio-philosophical norms of the… Continue Reading

Wounds to Beauty

by Bruce Herman 1Most history seems to carry on its back vestiges of paradise… There is hardly a civilization, perhaps hardly an individual consciousness, that does not carry inwardly a sense of distant catastrophe. Somewhere a wrong turn was taken in that “dark and sacred wood,” after which man has had to labor, socially, psychologically,… Continue Reading