Religious Art Award

Exhibition at Holy Trinity Launceston

Each year since 2006 the Launceston Art Society has held an exhibition at Holy Trinity, which is a wonderful opportunity for the church to engage with the wider Launceston community.

The exhibition opened this year with a function on Friday 27 July and concluded on Friday 10 August. As in previous years, Holy Trinity sponsored a religious art prize, won this year by Olga Parr, whose description of her work is detailed below.

The Russian Orthodox Church celebrates Easter in a special way. On a Saturday night people put on their best clothes and come together in dark churches that symbolise a gloomy world without the light of faith. At midnight ringing church bells announce the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Priests come to the altar holding a crucifix and candles. Solemnly singing, they walk through the church and then around it. Everyone lights the candles and follows the procession. Churches and cathedrals are now full of singing voices and candle light.

The Orthodox liturgical chant substitutes a Catholic organ and creates a very special atmosphere. The Easter service ends early in the morning when the priests go around the crucifix. Numerous church bells start ringing, the singing gets louder and finally the priests tell everybody to forgive each other and seal this with a hug and a kiss.

The judges, who included the Rector, commented that the work met the criteria which stated that the work should be a recognisable exploration of faith, spirituality, religion, hope, humanity, social justice, belief and/or non-belief within the broad context of Christian faith and the Bible. They further commented that ‘the composition draws the viewer into the circle of warmth, welcome and acceptance created by the children. The placement of the candles’ glow creates a subtle cruciform in the picture plane. A layered work of great technical skill.’

Despite there being fewer works on display than some years, a good number of visitors came through during the two-week exhibition. The Parish of Holy Trinity values this connection with the wider community and looks forward to hosting it again in 2019.

Lorraine Andrews, Parish Secretary

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 priest in green robe presenting award to artist inside large church, painting on easel in background