Bigger than any box: art from the juxtaposition

Posted by on 07.31.08 | 2 Comments
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Twelve years ago or more I was a chaplain at a Veterans Hospital in Colorado. I worked in the substance abuse and psychiatric units. It was one of the favorite jobs of my lifetime thus far. The guys (mostly guys) were respectful, easy to work with (on the days that I had a sense of humor!) and most were hungry for a sense of spirituality that could help them understand their crooked paths. On Christmas, 1995 the front page of Life magazine had an image of the many faces of Jesus from across cultures. There were black, Asian, Rastafarian and female Jesuses. I laminated the picture and took it in for some sessions to the VA. They men were silenced and awed by the power of the images and the potential meaning behind them. We made some art of our own illustrating the divinity in us, residing in our particularities, our peculiarities, our brokenness. It was a powerful teaching tool: in low Christology: Jesus is us, closer than our own skins.

When somehow I came across this art on Matt Stone’s blog, I was stunned–here are some of the same images, and many more. Matt and I do not share a theology, but we surely share a love of the image and profundity of Jesus. Not sure when have I come across such a variety of art that depicts particular viewpoints of Jesus as found on this site, Glocal Christianity. The humanity of Jesus speaks clearly through these images–across cultures, generations, continents. The paradigms are radically different, and the humanity is the connective tissue.


Christian Art | African

(a sampling)

Jesus and MaryJesus falls the first time

Aboriginal Christ Ascending

Christian Art | Aboriginal

Aboriginal MadonnaAboriginal Crucifixion

The Journey


And there’s more…(click on the links for the galleries)


Christian Art | Alternative

Red Seraphim

Christian Art | Ancient

Jesus and Spiderman

Christian Art | Animated

Prodigal Son
prodigal son

Christian Art | Asian

Book of Dimma - Evangelist Portrait

Christian Art | Celtic

The Wheel and the Tree - Lughnasadh

Christian Art | Esoteric

Goth Eucharist

Christian Art | Goth


Christian Art | Middle Eastern


Christian Art | Native American

These images are evocative and primal–filled with the power of a religion whose best days have been ones of appropriating the belief systems, mystery and connection of those in the headlights of the conversion-mission. The worst days have been spent trying to eradicate these same belief systems. The images shown here illuminate the power of the human psyche to take the high road and the humanity of what Christ taught-and still teaches-and make it one’s own.

Thank you, Matt Stone for compiling these images. It is a labor of rich testament to your love and devotion.




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