The Catholic Imagination

Catholic Imagination
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follow url The earliest fashion objects dated to the s, but most were from the last ten or twenty years. Frustratingly, the information presented within the exhibition space and in the catalogue was lacking in critical fashion scholarship. Garments were analyzed for how they resembled Catholic vestments or connected to different Catholic rituals and themes.

They were not placed within their own sociopolitical context but treated simply as a celebration of Catholicism regardless of when a garment was created or by whom. The scholarly essays are written by experts in Catholic theology, history, and vestments.

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The main essay in the fashion-focused volume, by David Morgan, professor of religious studies and art history at Duke University, primarily analyzes the role of garments as compositional devices in works of ecclesiastical art 97— The only catalogue texts focused on fashion are short blurbs, seemingly compiled from abridged versions of the exhibition labels and didactics. Anyone reading only the catalogue text could be forgiven for thinking that the exhibition revolved solely around the significance of vestments within the church itself.

Despite being a fashion exhibition, fashion is secondary to the church here. And Heavenly Bodies reads as an unabashed glorification of Catholicism.

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The exhibition was also problematic for its glaring omissions. One notable exception was Japanese designer Jun Takahashi of Undercover. The label text used the garments to discuss the painting and concept of the Garden of Eden, giving no background on the designer himself. Likewise, almost all of the garments were installed on white, waifish mannequins with distinctively Caucasian, doll-like features and blonde, red, or brown wigs that imitate Caucasian hair.

Together, these curatorial choices served to whitewash the exhibition, presenting a biased view of the fashion industry and the Catholic church. Also avoided was the fact that many of the designers on view are or were homosexual and have or had complicated relationships with the church.

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While an institution cannot anticipate headline-making news that breaks during the run of a show, such scandals are hardly new to the church. All exhibitions are political, a result of years of behind-the-scenes negotiations and development.

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I have no doubt that the political maneuvering required to forge a relationship with the Vatican in order to secure the loaned objects influenced the tone of the exhibition. But given how isolated and contemporary the Vatican objects are within the show, they ultimately do not seem worth the sacrifice of true fashion scholarship. Please send comments about this review to editor. A Publication of the College Art Association. Concise, critical reviews of books, exhibitions, and projects in all areas and periods of art history and visual studies.

Review Categories. About caa. As a result, a very specific, ornate aesthetic came to be associated with if not directly linked to holiness. Both depict the crucifixion and their respective plots hinge upon the events of Holy Week the days leading up to Easter Sunday.

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And, as Dr. Winston points out, the crucifix is a uniquely Catholic symbol: "The Catholic crucifix [shows] Jesus on the cross. Seeing the body, seeing the physicality of his suffering, is very different than many Protestant churches, [which] use just the cross, without Jesus. We mentioned the negligee, right?

Despite the long-standing place of Catholicism in mainstream storytelling, there remains something unique about this moment in the Church that makes paying tribute to its visual legacy especially palatable, even appealing, to a mainstream audience. And, yes, Pope Francis and his rise to wokeness has something to do with it. Andrus says, citing his openness to interfaith communication and his willingness to recognize such global issues as poverty and climate change.

Catholics React to Met Gala 2018 Fashion

But, the simple fact that he willingly speaks on these topics and shows even a little leniency reflects a desire to engage a larger public. Andrus says.

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Martin says. Not without an uproar from the secular and non-Catholic public. Only a month into his papacy, Pope Francis called for swift action against Catholic officials accused of abuse.

In , he acknowledged that the institution was decades late to addressing its sex abuse problem. Just this week, it was announced that Vatican treasurer Cardinal George Pell will stand trial for a history of abuse.

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Catholic imagination refers to the Catholic viewpoint that God is present in the whole creation and in human beings, as seen in its sacramental system whereby . The Catholic Imagination [Andrew Greeley] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Catholics live in an enchanted world: a world of statues and.

Nevertheless, Rev. Of course, to say that the Met and its institutional heads were waiting around for Pope Francis to arrive on the scene would be a gross exaggeration. Whatever your opinion on the Catholic aesthetic and the Catholic Church, for that matter , come May 7, mainstream stars like Rihanna and Kendall Jenner will attempt to interpret biblical tropes at their most baroque via red carpet fashion.