Sunday, September 28, 2008

The Visitation

"The Vatican Visitation of Seminaries" - T. Nelson, ex-voto
This image was created after learning of the scandal in Austria concerning the discovery of rampant homosexual activity in a seminary there a few years ago. Admittedly it is also a cynical look at what a visitation might have looked like in a U.S. seminary before the visitation of 2005. The demon in the corner images the Antichrist and erroneous teaching, and he is warning the clerics towards a cover-up as the visitation nears. The image of Our Lady is the Virgin of the Apocalypse. The prelate approaching with altar boys suggests the need for an exorcism or deliverance of the house, while the table displays evidence of a party, with the Blessed Sacrament casually left out. I refer to the composition and style as "ex-voto" - not good art by any means.Posted by Picasa


  1. ex-voto, in gratitude or devotion, an interesting designation as the theme deals with such difficult issues. I very much enjoyed your description. Not sure why you call this "not good art" - not a happy theme but not good art? Why?

  2. I say that it is not good art because most people who have seen it are repelled by it.

  3. It is disturbing.... but that was the point

  4. Very much so Adrienne.

  5. The Crucifixion was replant.

    My art seldom disturbs anyone but that doesn't make it good any more than this is not good art. I've held back creating works that disturb and then sometimes wonder am I really saying anything? Here you are saying something.

    There's a quote in the back of my head that won't come forward that runs along the lines of art that doesn't disturb isn't art. Don't fully agree with that but I take the point.

    What the world doesn't need is another Thom*a Kinca*de.

  6. Yes, this is most definitely disturbing, but I think that's the point of the work.

    I find your depiction of the demon even more unsettling. He doesn’t look as demonic as often portrayed in other works with horns and fangs, etc. He could almost pass-up as an angel to the untrained eye, which adds more to his conniving and duplicitous nature.

  7. Yes Tom - and I knew the rector of the semminary.... Twilight zone music... it is scary.

  8. Georgette10:54 AM

    Terry, I just love your work! Pictures saying a thousand words and all that, man!

    The demon up in the corner, he has the stigmata! Oh! Scary! The false piety, teh false piety.

    And disturbing, yes, all of it, but so poignant. The sinners in the background, hastily putting on their clothes; the pigs running through the sty, amongst pizza crumbs and old newspapers ("vatican investigates") and stamped out, stale cigarettes. I can almost smell the stinkiness!! And in this mess, the pyx is left near the edge of the table, just waiting for somebody to knock it over.

    I hope the approaching prelate brought lots of holy water and his exorcism prayer-book!


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