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Arts & Culture

Celebration Circle's Sacred Art Of Altars Are Works Of Art

A yearly art project by interfaith group Celebration Circle challenges artists to create, and the viewers to contemplate. It’s called “One People, Many Paths: The Sacred Art of Altars.” 

The Celebration Circle Art Director Zet Baer said the project centers around altars, which are usually thought of as something found primarily at churches. She said that's changing.

"More and more alters are becoming focal points at homes and offices, even in places for people to be reminded and to touch into something that's meaningful," she said.

For the last 16 years the group has given artists an interesting challenge: They're given a 10-by-14 inch wooden box and told to create something with it.

Credit Karl Franklin
Rudi Harst: Your Heart is Yearning To Love

"And each artist is invited to use their own skills and creative spirit to interpret whatever it is that they want to include,” she said. 

The artists are given no walking orders.

"No, none whatsoever. They can turn the box upside down or inside out, or we'd have an artist every year that puts his in a fire before he begins working on it," she said.

The results vary greatly. One doesn't look like the next, which doesn't look like the next one, nor the one that came before.

"Each one is completely unique. We have some very bright and colorful ones. We have some more somber and thoughtful ones, some are political," Baer said. 

The one thing they all hold in common: each artist seems to take his or her creative endeavor seriously. Artists for the 2020 project have been chosen and their creations already complete.

"They're very, very deliberate and creatively expressed,” she said.

And they're all going to be for sale.

Credit Karl Franklin
Kathy Barrios: Dolorosa

"The bidding begins on Friday, September 18, at 7 o'clock with a kickoff for an hour,” Baer said. “And then the bidding will continue through Friday, October 9."

They will close the bidding that night at 8 p.m., and the winning bidders will have their new, inspirational piece of art. 

Jack Morgan can be reached at Jack@TPR.org and on Twitter at @JackMorganii.

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