The Birmingham Museum of Art is holding an exhibition called “Embodying Faith: Imagining Jesus Through the Ages.” Through April 21, anyone can visit the Arrington Gallery in the museum for free and see these pieces of art spanning five centuries. The prints, drawings, paintings, sculpture, quilts, flags and books span different continents and the mergings of varying religions.
Each Jesus or Madonna exhibited reflect the society and religious context of the culture they come from, from the blending with Vodou in Haiti, or with Buddhism in the Qing Dynasty of China.
“To depict important events from the life of Jesus and to reflect on his central role in the Christian faith, artists relied on texts, visual traditions, or both,” reads a Birmingham Museum of Art press release. “At the same time, artists often conveyed complex theological concepts through their representations of the figure.”
The exhibit also encompasses times where the artists had little access to historical records about the time of Jesus or even the Middle East.
“I just think the exhibit really showed how Jesus was represented in different cultures of the artists, even in clothing and landmarks that don’t really fit the Bible but make Jesus relatable to the audience,” Samford junior Emily Thorington said. “There were castles and windmills which were familiar backdrops for the artist instead of the Middle Eastern landscapes of those stories.”
The museum is open 10 a.m. through 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, noon through 5 p.m. on Sunday’s and is closed every Monday.
Kathryn has returned as our Features Editor. She is a junior Journalism & Mass Communications major with a concentration in print and is from Atlanta, Georgia.