The Divine in the Arts

divine in the arts

The Divine in the Arts
23920 IS 350R.001 MWF 11-11:50
X-listed with HUM 320R.001 CRN# 23905
Kim Abunuwara

"The death of God signifies the impossibility of expressing religious experience in traditional religious language" (Mircea Eliade). Traditional religious imagery and symbolism, embraced for so long, was largely rejected in the 20th century. Though modern artists have abandoned the idol worship of earlier periods their work is no less interested in the question of the divine. Mark Rothko lamented the spiritual bankruptcy of modern man and his paintings are profoundly spiritual. This class will examine the evolution of the artistic language used to express religious experience. We will learn the spiritual languages of various periods of art history and decipher their messages about the divine. What can traditional religious imagery and symbolism tell us about ourselves, the expression of faith, and the human longing for the divine? What has the rejection of that tradition meant for the divine in art? Is it gone or merely unrecognizable? Where is it disguised as the profane? What beliefs are being expressed now and what artistic language is being used to express them?