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I recently came across a news story about a group of Catholic Christians in India who are getting serious about deepening the connection between their faith and the visual arts. The story describes the formation of the Indian Christian Artists Forum, which seeks to "promote study and appreciation of Christian art among various sections of the people- clergy, religious and laity in the church, and the wider society in India, and to encourage a deeper understanding, appreciation and application of Indian Christian art in theology, liturgy and architecture in the Church in India." The forum was convened by artist/priest Dr. Paul Kattukaran, and consists of fifteen renowned artists from various parts of India. At their inaugural meeting in August, the group appointed Kattukaran as the national coordinator for the forum.
|Jyoti Sahi, The Dalit Madonna,|
It is exciting to see a group of Indian artists and followers of Jesus who are beginning to organize for the purpose of moving beyond “borrowed images,” so that a new visual language can be created for the expression and understanding of who Jesus is and what it means to follow him, as Indians. Many great Christian Indian artists from the past were named as inspirations for the group's work, including Angelo da Fonseca, Frank Wesley, Alfred Thomas, Jose Pereira, Sr. Genevieve, and Sr. Claire-- most of whom I hope to eventually discuss individually in this blog.
|Dr. Paul Kattukaran|
The Forum plans to meet again in February 2011 to further organize and plan future activities, as well as host an art exhibition on Mother Teresa by the participants.