Jesus

Colouring a Black and White Jesus

Colouring a Black and White Jesus

Is it a good idea to let people colour all over the walls? 

I trust it will be worth it–something in my gut tells me that–but is it wise? 

I'm wrestling with this Saturday morning, just before we open Borys Tarasenko's Sweet Jesus at the Bleeding Heart Art Space. 


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Borys Tarasenko Draws a Sweet Jesus

Borys Tarasenko describes himself as 'Edmonton artist. Eater of lunch'. Which, of course, tells you more about him than it appears to. He's got a wonderfully dry wit.

I first saw Borys Tarasenko at the Royal Bison Art & Craft Fair here in Edmonton. He was at a table strewn with colouring books called Sweet Jesus. As someone who has encountered plenty of religious imagery, I was drawn in and found the drawings funny. Irreverent perhaps. Taking a playful swipe at Christian doctrine, I expected, but then I looked closer. These were not irreverent jabs at the Christian faith. These were old stories made new in a delightfully weird, contemporary style. When I found out that Borys' father is an Ukrainian Catholic priest–that Borys is speaking to the tradition of religious iconography from within–I became very interested. 


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Doorways and Details

Doorways and Details

They say that God is in the details, but I’m not so sure. I’m beginning to notice a whole lot of details that seem left entirely up to you and I. The amount of influence we have in this world–for good or evil–is a sobering thought.


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Stuck to the Feather-light Jesus

Stuck to the Feather-light Jesus

Not an aphorism I typically use for God. But it’s been floating around my mind for a week or two. The feather has fallen, perhaps, from the wings of friends I’ve watched fly out the open windows of churches over the years. 

Sitting with a new friend over coffee, the image takes shape. He tells me how he’s tried to leave his faith behind, but has remained within its ever-expanding walls. The problem is Jesus, he tells me. 

He just cannot get over Jesus. Jesus sticks. Like a feather, I think.


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Ascension

Norton, Jay. Ascension, from  Art in the Christian Tradition , a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN.  http://diglib.library.vanderbilt.edu/act-imagelink.pl?RC=54144  [retrieved May 11, 2015]. Original source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/37996904@N00/351895142/. 

Norton, Jay. Ascension, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. http://diglib.library.vanderbilt.edu/act-imagelink.pl?RC=54144 [retrieved May 11, 2015]. Original source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/37996904@N00/351895142/. 

This week marks the Ascension Of Our Lord in the Christian tradition. This upcoming Sunday, Jesus vanishes into thin air. It's kind of a big deal.

 This image provides some food for thought to accompany the week's Lectionary readings.


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