Portia Placino

Repository of my thoughts and images of art, literature, travel, and life.

Art and the Church Lecture


Art and religion has a very complicated relationship, to say the least.

In art history, art played a key role in the development of the church, more particularly a belief system. In a society where few can read, they can certainly understand the visual language of the churches. Iconography was ingrained in the people, despite a period of iconoclasm. Early religious visual language also borrowed heavily from the more familiar “pagan” visual language, which they are still heavily dependent on until today.

This is very similar to what we have. Remember Poleteismo from last year? The visual language of religion and belief was so strong that removed from the familiar setting, it has become incomprehensible.

Art and the Church Lecture

Four Evangelists from the Book of Kells

Christ Pantocrator, Monastery Church, Daphni

But early religious figure wasn’t really about Jesus, it was more about Mary in her blue dress, the iconography of the mother and child.

Madona and Child Mosaic, Trieste


Madonna and Child Enthroned with Angels, Cimabue

Madonna and Child Enthroned with Angels, Giotto

Roettgen Pieta

Very reminiscent of Isis and Horus, isn’t it? We’d talk about them next term…

Isis and Horus





2 comments on “Art and the Church Lecture

  1. Blanche Llanes (117A)
    July 28, 2012

    Ms Portia, is this our 3rd lecture?

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