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Father, Son, Sinner, Saint

By Anonymous Essay

WINSTON-SALEM NORTH CAROLINA, 1972. My mother has left me at the edge of the property my father’s mother shares with kin whose exact relations I’ve never sorted out. My father, in mustache and bellbottoms, is walking the path between my grandmother’s trailer and the house of a woman I call my aunt. He crouches and…

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Veselka

By Sonya Bilocerkowycz Essay

THERE IS A PLACE that does not exist yet. It may be black, or a color we cannot imagine, or no color at all. It goes on forever in every direction. In the center (can there be a center?) is a golden egg, gilded and burning. The egg is wrapped in nothingness like a royal…

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Christ the Chimera:
The Riddle of the Monster Jesus

By Katie Kresser Essay

POSSIBLY THE EARLIEST visual representation of Jesus of Nazareth is a crude drawing scratched on the wall of a Roman house, dubbed by scholars the “Alexamenos graffito.” It shows a man in profile gesturing toward a donkey-headed figure on a cross. Beneath it, the anonymous artist has written, “Alexamenos worships his god.” Around 200 AD…

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A Hermeneutic of Humility:
The Art of Jonathan Anderson

By Bruce Herman Essay

JONATHAN ANDERSON THINKS ABOUT his paintings in construction terms: to him, they are buildings. They regularly depict architectural structures—façades, doorways, hallways, stairways, chapels, homes, and so on—structures in which people live, move, and interact. But his paintings are not only images of built structures; they also are themselves built structures, material constructions that create space…

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Making Things Up

By Ron Hansen Essay

IN ONE OF HIS MONOLOGUES about the fictional Minnesota town of Lake Wobegon on the Prairie Home Companion radio show, Garrison Keillor relates: It’s a good time, winter, for all of us. It’s a time when all the things that we’ve been postponing for months can now be put off for a good while longer.…

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Sandals on the Ground:
My Pilgrimage with the Sonnet

By Jeanne Murray Walker Essay

ONE RADIANT FALL MORNING about eight years ago, I needed to revise some poems before I sent them to editors. I approached my desk armed with questions I ask my students: Is the language alive? Check out the metaphor. Does the poem make an argument or take the reader on a journey? I am a…

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What the Polisher Sees:
The Art of James Tughan

By Samuel Martin Essay

DEAR JAMES: If you ever wondered who burned out the motor on the art department’s jigsaw, it was me. I hope you weren’t forced to pay for that. You’ve paid too much for the sins of others. I was using the jigsaw to cut up the triptych I’d made for my final undergrad art show.…

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A Head like Two Heads:
The Paintings of Shai Azouly

By Abraham Storer Essay

PAINTER SHAI AZOULAY recently moved into a new studio in Jerusalem, a city where he has lived and worked throughout his artistic career. His studio, however, is far from the domed sacred spaces and stony streets associated with the Holy City. I took a meandering bus to the western edge of town to visit his…

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Alphabetic Art

By Lauren Winner Essay

The following is adapted from the plenary address given at Image’s Glen Workshop in Santa Fe in August, 2018, on the conference theme of “Telling Truths: Art, Honesty, and Community.” I HAVE WRITTEN THIS TALK as a partial alphabet: it starts with A (for art) and goes through T (for telling truths). For alphabetic languages,…

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Appropriation and Representation

By Theodore L. Prescott Essay

IN FALL OF 2016 I RETURNED TO THE CLASSROOM, filling in for a friend who was on sabbatical. The course was a seminar for art students, one that I had taught many times before I retired. My friend had used Chaim Potok’s My Name Is Asher Lev as one of the texts, just as I…

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