Wednesday August 29, 2007

Brazilian Marianist Art

Brazilian artist Sidney Matias will visit the University of Dayton in September as the Marian Library showcases his vibrant, intricate work, which is infused by a strong Marianist spirituality.

His work will be featured Sept. 17 through Nov. 18 in the Marian Library gallery on the seventh floor of Roesch Library on the UD campus. Matias will be on campus from Sept. 10 through Sept. 20 and will be honored at a reception at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 18 at the Marian Library lounge.

Mathias, a member of the lay Marianist community in Campinas, Brazil since 1999, said he practices his vow by exploring Mary as an educator, protector and role model. He said he begins his work by meditating on a Scripture passage for inspiration.

According to M. Jean Frisk, S.S.M., the library's director of art and special projects, each piece shows how "the love we have for our faith can find expression."

A strong sense of Brazilian culture infuses Mathias's work and contributes to his style, demonstrated by his vivid color choices and use of intricate shapes. Matias's art has been used on Christmas cards, chapels, murals, mosaics and illustrations. He said he feels "like a missionary, an evangelist using my art to try to inspire people to live like Mary."

During his 10-day visit, Matias will live alongside UD students in a Marianist house because "he wants the young people to rejoice with him," Frisk said.

The Rev. Johann Roten, S.M., director of the International Marian Research Institute at UD, said Matias's work reveals a "new look at religious art that brings it to our level."

There is no charge to view the exhibit. Hours for the Marian Library are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday; Saturday and Sunday are by appointment.

For more information on the Marian Library /International Marian Research Institute call 937-229-4214.

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