March 11, 2011

Artist interprets stations of the cross at Oxford

Art by Kristofer Neely.

Stations of the cross  — whose interpretation is inspired by street art, American folk art, German expressionism and traditional Christian icons — will be exhibited March 14 through April 22 in the chapel at Oxford College.

"Into Your Hands: Postmodern Meditations on the Stations of the Cross" is a series of works by South Carolina artist Kristofer Neely.

On Tuesday, March 15, at 7 p.m. in the Oxford Chapel, Neely will talk about creating the exhibit, commissioned by Oxford Chaplain Lyn Pace.

Neely, who is assistant dean for studio art at Wofford College in Spartanburg, S.C., gives each of the traditional 14 stations his personal interpretation. The stations began as a way to instruct Christian pilgrims in the Middle Ages. They depict individual scenes from Jesus's journey from the Garden of Gethsemane to his tomb.

"As an artist, I consider the very process of creating my work to often function as a manual act of contemplative prayer…I believe there is no greater challenge than creating art that can invite others into a prayerful experience," says Neely.

"The privilege to share my work in the austere beauty of the Oxford Chapel only adds to the scale of that challenge," he notes.

Pace says that Neely's art will have wide appeal beyond its ties to the Christian season of Lent.

"For some this will be a religious experience; for others, a cultural experience, not a religious one.  I believe that no matter what the visitor's background, this can be a meaningful experience," Pace says.

The exhibit is free and open to the public.  General hours are Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with free parking available close to the chapel. 

For more information on weekend hours or group tours, contact Pace at 770.784.8392.

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