Situating Contemporary Art and Religion
The Introduction provides an overview of the central questions and the theoretical framework of the book. Since the early 1990s in Europe and the United States many artists critically re-appropriated religious, motifs, themes and images to produce works that cannot qualify as ‘religious,’ but remains in a dialogue with the visual legacy of mostly the Western, and more specifically the Catholic, version of Christianity. Present-day art does not embed religious images to celebrate them, but in order to pose critical questions concerning central aspects of the rules that regulate the status of images, their public significance, the conditions of their production and authorship, and their connection to an origin or tradition, a context or an author that guarantees their value. The motif of the true image or acheiropoietos (not made by a human hand) is related to central set of features that allow distinguishing between regimes or eras of the image. Its transformations provide a conceptual matrix for understanding of the reconfiguring relationships between art and religion. The introduction provides an overview of the theoretical context, the selection of artworks, bibliography on the subject and the chapters of the book.
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