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Ordained to Create:
The Self-Taught Art of Southern Preachers, Prophets and Visionaries

September 6 – October 15, 2005


Image: Zechariah, Ch. One, Myrtice West

On September 6 the Center Art Gallery at Calvin College opens its 2005-06 gallery schedule with Ordained to Create: The Self-Taught Art of Southern Preachers, Prophets and Visionaries. The exhibition, which runs through October 15, contains a selection of 43 eclectic works of art by 15 self-taught southern artists. Fueled by an unwavering sense of mission and inspired by their own religious dreams and visions, these artists have created a powerful and unapologetic body of work.

The works assembled for this exhibition focus on the passionate and creative journeys of the Rev. Howard Finster, Zebedee Armstrong, Missionary Mary Proctor, the Rev. R.A. Miller, Lorenzo Scott, the Rev. W.C. Rice, Myrtice West, Linda Burton, the Rev. B.F. Perkins, Bernice Sims, Mary T. Smith, Felix Virgous and the Rev. Ruby Williams. These “southern preachers, prophets and visionaries” readily mix art and religion to create vibrant and provocative pieces on canvas, wood, metal and other found objects.

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Public Programs

Exhibition Reception
Friday, September 9, 7-9 pm
Center Art Gallery

Gallery Talk“Beyond Criticism”
Kasarian Dane, Assistant Professor of Art, Calvin College
Thursday, September 29, 4 pm
Center Art Gallery

Film “In the Realms of the Unreal: The Mystery of Henry Darger”
Bytwerk Theater/DeVos Communication Center
In conjuction with the Calvin Film Forum
Friday, October, 7, 7:30 pm

•Pre-film discussion, followed by a viewing of “In the Realms of the Unreal,” by Academy Award-winning director Jessica Yu, which explains the parallel lives of legendary outsider artist Henry Darger.