Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Religious Art in the News


Religious art in the news! I read about this first on the Huffington Post, which got the news from Mother Jones. The artist Jon McNaughton and his painting, "One Nation Under God" was "above the fold" on the Huffington Post this morning.

I finally got to the artist's website to take a look but wasn't able to use the roll-over feature to identify the people in the painting - I think it's overwhelmed by hits.

I don't agree with McNaughton's politics, and I'm always a little suspicious when artists try to conflate religion and politics - but it happens a lot. He's chosen a scene which he is hoping will visually spread his beliefs. That's what I like about religious art - the use of symbols to get ideas across.

He's heavy handed in this case, and McNaughton uses words to describe the message of the image, which also waters it down (imo). The painting feels pedantic to me. I don't think it's as successful as other political uses of the image of Jesus because of all his explication.

But, it's exciting to see religious art make news!

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