Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Art of Faiths at the Waterworks Art Center Gallery

Opening November 26

Art of Faiths- Religions of the World; Diversity and Tolerance
November 26, 2012- February 9, 2012

Opening Reception, Friday November 30
Informal gallery talks begin at 5 pm followed by the reception from 6-8 pm.  Free and open to the public.

Expressing one's religious beliefs through visual expression has been a basic tenant of mankind throughout the ages.  From Paleolithic cave art found in France and detailed clay and stone works by Aztec Indians, to the architectural masterpieces of construction and artistic detail found in cathedrals, mosques, and temples around the world - it is with us. 

This exhibition focuses on diversity of expression by seven contemporary artists who approach and express their beliefs in every way from realism to abstraction.  Through visual mediums, we hope to promote understanding and tolerance, and to prompt discussions about religions and cultures of the world today. 

This exhibition is a step out for me.  Those who know me personally know my faith and my art are important to me, and they are intermingled in my practice as an artist. Often though society and the cultural climate we live in silences the spiritual voice.

Artist Statement for this suite below:  
These portraits on glass of 4 Friars truly depict saints of the day.  You might never see or know Friars Xavier or Bill unless you visit the St. Francis Inn in Philadelphia, where they reside and serve this inner city soup kitchen for the homeless.  They serve with great humility and in community, great attributes of the Franciscan charism. 
John Michael Talbot is our very own rock star for the contemporary Catholic, and a brother within the community of Secular Franciscans.  His music repertoire extends song of praise and contemplative worship.  Charismatic Friar Raniero Cantalamessa, O.F.M. Cap, is more commonly known as the Pope’s Preacher, first acknowledged as such under the reign of Pope John Paul II, where he was found laying hands in prayer on the Vatican.  These four individuals carry out varied elements of our Franciscan spirituality, and model Francis and Christ for us to follow in ‘rebuilding’ His church.

Four Friars: Xavier, Bill, John Michael, Raniero
Vitreous painting on glass
Each 8 x 10"

Artist Statement for this suite below: 
Professed to the Order of Secular Franciscans, as a Roman Catholic artist in the 21st century, often carries the dichotomy and structure of being socially silenced.  Being Franciscan calls me to a simplicity and sincerity of heart, in contrast to the darkness found within the contemporary world.  Intuitive and contemplative prayer, intersect through a joy and meditation of faith with relationship to my Lord.  Hiding Place references the sanctuary we have in that relationship, through a personal understanding of His word, His Eucharist, His Word made flesh in our lives.  Responding to his word with inner certainty, through the act of intuitive painting is a visual expression of praise and yearning for the simple presence of our God.

Hiding Place I
(Oil, pastel and pencil on Rives), 22 x 28"

Hiding Place II
(Oil, pastel and pencil on Rives), 22 x 28"

Hiding Place III
(Oil, pastel and pencil on Rives), 22 x 28"


  1. Betti, Just a note to say that you write as beautifully as you do paint and glass. What a wonderful statement of your faith and I can personally atest to the authentisity of both words and visual art. You are indeed a local and perhaps national and international treasure.
    Thanks for using what gifts you have been given and sharing them with us...much love franco

  2. Thank you and bless you Frank! You are a wonderful big brother! T