Mixing the burning issues of our time like race relations and women’s rights into a symbol of Christian art like Michelangelo’s “Pieta” risks confusing the waters. Anna OrbaczewskaThe “Pieta” painting is now on display at the AIR Gallery in Brooklyn illustrates the point.
what you see instead of Jesus‘ lifeless body on his mother Mary’s lap after the Crucifixionis a lifeless, blue-skinned woman in the lap of a hooded figure.
As Art News Magazine sees Anna’s painting, the characters are “determined to escape a toxic relationship”. “Decisively”?
The magazine is so firm on this interpretation that it titled the magazine “A Call to Women’s rights.” What do women’s rights have to do with good Book the story of Mary and her dead son?
Granted, AIR Gallery is known for taking risks by female artists, but Anna’s work abuses that privilege by going out of her way to twist a Christian art subject to adapting to a socio-political agenda.
When you play a iconic image As Michelangelo’s “Pietà” with figures in similar poses but dissimilar in meaning under the same title, you make the meaning uncertain.
The curator of the exhibition Agnieszka Rayzacher, had written about Anna’s art in a catalog for a 2020 exhibition, saying, “She refuses to bury her feelings.” All right, but does she have to solve her problems Michelangelois it work?
But wait. Something else Artistic news says proves when he says, “There’s an occult edge to ‘Pieta’ – the hood, the ritual going on about the blue woman.” Such a takeaway resonates. Fanaticism in politics or religion can be deadly. In this sense, Anna invoking Michelangelo’s “Pieta” unfolds.
Another dubious work title was “Pisse Christ” by Andres Serrano a photo of a crucifix submerged in urine.
If he hadn’t used that title, the cross lit by the golden fluid might have been seen as a celebration. His explanation for naming his photo “Piss Christ” – which he sought to imagine Christianity drowned in commercialism – was not reflected in his image.
To mix together
Done right, mixing biblical icons with current events can be effective as long as your headline reflects the mix.
You may remember Rene Cox “Yo Mama’s Last Supper” photo at Brooklyn Museum of Art showing all the apostles in black.
The image prompted then-mayor Rudolph Giuliani to shout that it was anti-Catholic. But the image title suggested patriarchy and racism in the church.
Obviously, using biblical references to deal with current events is a minefield. I also think of Art Spiegelmann‘s New Yorker magazine cover drawing of a rabbit crucified a few years ago, which shook up the Catholic League for Religion and Civil Rights.
The drawing might have been defensible had he not titled his work, “Tax Reduction Theology”, referring to a rabbit in the drawing dressed in a suit with empty pockets drawn on a background of Form 1040A.
Spiegelmann said he was inspired by the fact that April 15 – the tax deadline – was the day before Easter. If he hadn’t used the title “Tax Cut Theology,” his image would have been a neat visual pun.
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