CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 22 September 2018

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Sharing the joy of the gospel through art

HONG KONG (SE): Sister Marie-Anastasia Carré, a nun from the Community of the Beatitudes, in association with the Hong Kong Diocesan Audio Visual Centre (DAVC) opened an exhibition of paintings, titled, Journey of the Heart: A pilgrimage from within, at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, Wanchai, on March 23. 
 
Sister Carré has already held four exhibitions of her works in watercolour, acrylic, ink and mixed media in France, Macau and Hong Kong. From the beginning of the Year of Mercy in 2016, together with DAVC she initiated the project called Art for God. 
 
In her introductory remarks, Sister Carré commented,  “Our life is a pilgrimage, a journey where one ‘remains restless until finds the rest in the Lord’.”
 
She said, “In this journey of pilgrimage, art has a special mission. It turns the invisible into visible. Art expresses the graces and blessings into light and colours; it makes available for us the religious experience.” 
 
Sister Carré added, “Art creation is also a school of the flexibility of the heart. I believe that art is my mission. I share my own journey as a seeker of Infinity, seeker of God.”
 
Forty-eight of her paintings are on display at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church and will be on view until May 20. 
 
Sister Carré conducted live painting sessions during Holy Week,  painting in silence. Pilgrims and art lovers can walk in to meditate and pray over her paintings. 
 
Opening the exhibition, Bishop Michael Yeung Ming-cheung said that it is not enough to have good intelligence to appreciate a work of art, rather one must have love and commitment for the art in order to feel the mind of the artist and to appreciate their work. 
 
He cited the example of the disciples on the road to Emmaus who failed to recognise Jesus although they knew a lot about scripture and could feel the heat of the Word in their hearts! 
 
Bishop Yeung also used the examples of the great works of art by the Chinese painter, Xu Beihong, or Michaelangelo in Rome, yet one may not understand what they communicate. 
 
He went on to remind the gathering that true appreciation of art would mean love for the work of the artist and an eagerness to share the message of the artist. 
 
Some of the paintings on display were done with Chinese ink. The prominent ones are the Disciples to Emmaus and the Wedding at Cana series. The wedding series comprises of three paintings of a Hong Kong-style wedding. The peculiar interior architecture of the church provides an unmatched ambiance for the exhibit. 
 
Fung Yat-ming, supervisor of the DAVC, told the Sunday Examiner that the Macau Diocesan Social Communications Centre would hold another exhibition of the paintings at St. Lawrence Church, Macau, in June. 
 
The Art for God initiative of the DAVC also plans to bring together interested Christian artists from around the city to discuss and study more about Christian arts and create artwork together. 
 
Those interested may leave their contact details with the organisers during the exhibition in Wanchai. 
 
Sister Carré was born to an artist’s family in France. After graduating in Visual Arts, she began a career as an art teacher. Yet, heeding the inner call to become a nun, she renounced art and became a consecrated sister. 
 
It was during her missionary years in the Philippines when she started painting again. In association with the DAVC, she aims to promote Catholic arts for spirituality and for sharing the joy of the gospel. 

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