[The modern art community and the Church] are two different worlds, with their own logics, their own gravitational fields, their own ecologies…At the extreme, each finds the other scarcely worthy of any careful thought or charitable feeling. At the very least, they have found themselves in a common state of frigid or indifferent relations.”
To celebrate the Divinity School’s 2017-2018 Opening Convocation, Duke Initiatives in Theology & the Arts (DITA) hosted two days of fine art, stimulating lectures with renown historians and theologians, and an exciting musical performance that featured over thirty musicians from top orchestras in the nation.
DITA is pleased to announce that our next research project, Theology, Modernity, & the Visual Arts (TMVA) has received full-funding from McDonald Agape Foundation. This project is part of a larger enterprise established by DITA in 2015: Theology, Modernity, & the Arts (TMA). TMA undertakes research in three main areas: music, the visual arts, and literature.
Duke Initiatives in Theology and the Arts partnered with the Nasher Museum of Art and Duke Chapel to host an exhibition of Miserere et Guerre, a series of 58 intaglio prints by French artist Georges Rouault (1871–1958). From March 5 through April 6, during the Lenten season, Duke Chapel displayed images from the series that unmask human duplicity and self-deception through the lens of Christ’s passion and suffering. The Nasher’s tandem installation, on display from March 18 through July 23, highlights scenes that illustrate the plight of refugees and the devastations of war.
To celebrate the Divinity School’s 2016-2017 Opening Convocation, Duke Initiatives in Theology and the Arts (DITA) hosted Call and Response: Two Days of Theology and the Arts. The events included a poetry reading interspersed with musical responses, a panel on visual art and the call to ministry, and a culminating event featuring nine principal musicians from five national orchestras and Duke University.
On March 30 Duke Divinity School held an installation ceremony for a commissioned painting by artist Bruce Herman. The painting, “Riven Tree,” is based on the resurrection of Jesus and hangs in the school’s York Room.
In March of 2016, Duke Initiatives in Theology and the Arts welcomed its second artist-in-residence, Bruce Herman, to Duke March 1-10 and March 28-30. Herman is the Lothlórien Distinguished Chair in Fine Arts at Gordon College in Wenham, Mass. His art has been exhibited widely in North America, Europe, Hong Kong, and Japan.
For Holy Week in 2015, Duke Initiatives in Theology and the Arts (DITA) partnered with King’s College Chapel, Cambridge for their annual Easter at King’s. The week was the third festival DITA has participated in through the Duke-Cambridge Collaboration, which began in 2009. Featured were DITA collaborations with composer James MacMillan, theologian and author Lord Rowan Williams, pianist Cordelia Williams, poet Micheal O’Siadhail, and painters Makoto Fujimura and Bruce Herman.