Museum of Contemporary Religious Art

November 7, 2011

New on MOCRA Voices: Adrian Kellard podcast

MOCRA Voices logoEarly this year we launched MOCRA Voices, a podcast series of conversations with thinkers and practitioners at the intersection of contemporary art, religion, and spirituality. Our aim is to take listeners in-depth with artists, scholars, theologians, religious leaders, and others who are engaged in the ongoing dialogue between visual art and the religious and spiritual dimensions.

We’ve just posted a new episode that focuses on the art and life of Adrian Kellard, the subject of MOCRA’s current exhibition, Adrian Kellard: The Learned Art of Compassion. Host John Launius and MOCRA Director Terrence E. Dempsey, S.J., are joined by Regina DeLuise, a close friend of Kellard and an artist photographer in her own right, and Susan Schreiber, Kellard’s New York gallery dealer. Dempsey, DeLuise, and Schreiber share stories of Kellard that serve to illuminate his artistic aims and influences, his distinctive visual style and treatment of his woodcut medium, and the ways in which Kellard’s upbringing, sexual orientation, and faith found expression in his work.

In addition to the podcast itself, we’ve prepared an extensive listening guide that provides context about the East Village art scene, the early years of the AIDS pandemic, the art of woodcuts, and more.

MOCRA Voices is made possible with financial support from the Regional Arts Commission.

–David Brinker, Assistant Director

December 1, 2010

Day With(out) Art 2010

December 1 is marked annually as World AIDS Day. Today museums and galleries across the world observe Day With(out) Art. As described on the Visual AIDS website,

Day Without Art (DWA) began on December 1st 1989 as the national day of action and mourning in response to the AIDS crisis. … In 1997 we suggested Day Without Art become a Day WITH Art, to recognize and promote increased programming of cultural events that draw attention to the continuing pandemic. Though “the name was retained as a metaphor for the chilling possibility of a future day without art or artists”, we added parentheses to the program title, Day With(out) Art, to highlight the proactive programming of art projects by artists living with HIV/AIDS, and art about AIDS, that were taking place around the world. It had become clear that active interventions within the annual program were far more effective than actions to negate or reduce the programs of cultural centers.

You can read more about Day With(out) Art and the Visual AIDS project here.

MOCRA has observed Day With(out) Art most years, sometimes with special works of art (here and here, for instance), or organizing community gatherings (here and here). This year, we do not have any special offerings, although a number of the works of James Rosen, while not specifically concerned with HIV/AIDS, certainly speak compellingly of love, loss, grief, and undying hope.

James Rosen, Homage to the Pietà d'Avignon

James Rosen, "Homage to the Pietà d'Avignon," 1989-91. Oil, wax/oil emulsion on canvas.

Today I came across a link to a film called Last Address, by filmmaker Ira Sachs, which “uses images of the exteriors of the houses, apartment buildings, and lofts where [a number of New York City-based artists] were living at the time of their deaths to mark the disappearance of a generation. The film is a remembrance of that loss, as well as an evocation of the continued presence of these artists’ work in our lives and culture.” (Read more about the film here.)

Keith Haring is among those artists. His last major work, Altarpiece: The Life of Christ, was exhibited at MOCRA in 1995. That casting of the altarpiece now resides in the The AIDS Interfaith Chapel at Grace Episcopal Cathedral in San Francisco.

We invite you to join us in calling to mind and honoring those we have lost, those we love who live with the reality of HIV/AIDS, the many millions around the world who languish without access to treatment, and the dedicated researchers, manufacturers, and agencies who are working to find a cure.

— David Brinker, Assistant Director

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