SALT LAKE CITY – With the 2002 winter sporting event and its associated cultural arts festival less than a year away, the Museum of Church History and Art has opened an exhibition inviting viewers to explore the perspectives of artists from around the world. World Views: Latter-day Saint Artists Look at Life features a collection of twenty-four works of art that convey the geographical and stylistically diverse nature of Latter-day Saint art. The year-long exhibit opened to the public on 24 February 2001.
Nearly half of the works were created by Latter-day Saint artists living outside the United States. Art from Asia, South America, Europe, and Africa add a unique visual variety to the exhibit. Exhibit curator Robert Davis said, “I chose art from the Museum collection that would help our regular visitors and an international audience understand the worldwide nature of Latter-day Saint artists. The art presents a glimpse into the global identity and presence of the Church.”
Latter-day Saint values shared by people throughout the world are depicted in the art. Messages of service, peace, and brotherly love are dominant, Davis said. David Linn’s painting entitled Ascent typifies the uplifting messages and common values of the art. Linn’s painting shows people linked hand-in-hand helping each other climb to the top of a rocky and dangerous cliff.
Several of the works also examine the importance of families to Latter-day Saints from various backgrounds. Baxter Queseda’s mixed media painting combines symbols from both his Apache and Latter-day Saint cultures. Storm clouds suggest nourishment from heaven to a Native American family painted within the center of a heart surrounded by the words “Family is Forever.” Agrippa Ndongwe’s opalstone sculpture is a tribute to families from his native Zimbabwe. The family in his sculpture holds hands and forms a circle symbolizing the eternal nature that Latter-day Saints place on family relationships.
Textile art is also represented in the exhibit. A colorful story quilt by Emma Allebes is done in a Scandinavian folk art style. It shows four women of different nationalities dressed in native costume and is entitled Women of all Nations Nurturing Peace.
The international flavor of the exhibit is perhaps best represented in a simple block print on paper from the former Soviet Union. Latter-day Saint convert Yuri Mogilevsky is one of Russia’s preeminent graphic artists. He masterfully depicts the importance of his countrymen uniting behind a common cause after the recent political changes that have transformed his homeland.
Themes from the Bible and the Book of Mormon reinforce the importance of these scriptures to Latter-day Saint artists throughout the world. The Last Supper is portrayed in a ceramic sculpture created by a team of Latter-day Saint women from Germany.
Also included is a colorful pieced fabric portrait of the Old Testament prophet Abraham by Ruth Dubrez and a hammered copper picture by Chilean artist Miguel Romero of The Tree of Life, a Book of Mormon allegory.
The most internationally recognized work of art in the exhibit is a poster by McRay Magleby, a renowned graphic artist formerly of Brigham Young University. Wave of Peace won worldwide acclaim after receiving first place honors in a UNESCO exhibit in Paris in 1985. The poster marks the fortieth anniversary of the destruction of Hiroshima and encourages people everywhere to strive for worldwide peace.
The exhibit will be open through 17 March 2002. Museum hours are 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. weekdays, and 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays, and most holidays. The Museum is located across the street from the Tabernacle and one-half block north of the Temple Square TRAX station.
Groups may schedule tours by calling 801-240-4615 at least one week in advance of their planned arrival date. Admission to the Museum is free. For recorded information, call 801-240-3310.