The Power of Sacred Art: Beauty that Saves and Shatters

Johan Van ParysReligion in its many different forms has acknowledged the formidable power of art throughout the ages. In response, some religions have embraced art; others have rejected it. As a result, great works have been created by some and destroyed by others. The questions raised centuries ago remain even today: What is the relationship between art and religion? May art critique religion? In turn, may religion censor art? Can a museum become a sacred space? Can a sacred space become a museum? What makes art such a powerful tool for religion, and why is religion sometimes afraid of art?

Johan van Parys, PhD, is the director of liturgy and sacred arts at the Basilica of Saint Mary in Minneapolis and author of Symbols That Surround Us (2012). He teaches in the School of Theology at St. John’s University. He is the current chair and founding member of the Minnesota chapter of the Patrons of the Arts in the Vatican Museums.

Drinks and appetizers at 5:30 p.m., docent-led tour at 6 p.m., and talk at 7:15 p.m.

Tickets: $45, available August 28 by calling Mia: 612.870.6323 or buy tickets online.