Monday, December 21, 2009

The Sacred Made Real

There is a superb exhibit of seventeenth century Spanish painting and sculpture at the National Gallery in London. I have heard that it is worth the nine pounds. According to The Telegraph:

Apart from royal and aristocratic portraiture, the imagery in most Spanish painting and sculpture during the Counter Reformation is religious. It is therefore not 'art’ in the modern sense because it was made neither for visual delight or aesthetic contemplation but as an aid to devotion.

Stimulated by the 'Spiritual Exercises’ of St Ignatius Loyola, the faithful sought in prayer to form mental images of Christ, the Virgin and Saints. The painter or sculptor’s aim was to make the figure so realistic that it is as though the person to whom the prayer is addressed is standing there before our very eyes.

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4 comments:

Stephanie A. Mann said...

There is also a great exhibition of sacred art in Indianapolis--works from churches and museums in Spain. The exhibit closes before Lent next year so the works can be in place in their churches before the penitential season begins. The catalog and dvd for the London exhibit also look great! Wish I could be there now!

elena maria vidal said...

Both exhibits sound wonderful!

Georgette said...

I hope there is a large selection of Goya in the exhibition. His works are very prayerfully meditative, to me.

love,
Gette

PS.Still haven't read the book yet...waiting till after the holidays! The reviews sound marvelous :)

elena maria vidal said...

I don't think they have Goya but there it lots of my personal favorite, Velazquez.

I can't wait to hear your impressions about the book, Gette!