Thursday April 28, 2011

A Community of Saints

Gatherings of hundreds of saints are depicted in the Marian Library's new exhibit of 12 large copper artworks.

The University of Dayton's Marian Library is focusing on the saints of the Catholic Church with a new exhibit of finely detailed large copper works by artist Rosemary Scott-Fishburn that depict gatherings of hundreds of saints.

"When the Saints…The Year in the Company of Mary and the Saints" is on display now through June 17 in the Marian Library Gallery on the seventh floor of the University of Dayton's Roesch Library. It's free and open to the public. Hours for the Marian Library are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday; Saturday and Sunday by appointment by calling 937-229-4214.

Scott-Fishburn, a 2001 convert to Catholicism, said in an artist's statement the artworks grew out of her explorations of her new faith and her desire to better know the saints. Each of 12 works represents a month and a collection of saints for that month.  

"Rosemary Scott-Fishburn has inscribed portraits of saints on sheets of copper, drawing their symbols and features into the soft and rich glow of the noble metal," said the Rev. Johann Roten, S.M., director of research and special projects for the Marian Library. "Saints are rays of God's goodness, shafts of the light of his truth and their whole being is permeated with the glow of his beauty.

"Thus, they become beacons of goodness, truth and beauty…. There is a saint for each one of us, a saint for each and every day of the year….And so the journey through the whole year begins in the company of the saints and Mary."

Scott-Fishburn is a graduate of Gordon College in Massachusetts. She is a painter and sculptor who lives and works in Gloucester, Mass. She calls her process of creating art with copper, "relief drawing."

Scott-Fishburn's work is included in several private collections and has been exhibited coast-to-coast, including shows in New York, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and California.

The University of Dayton's Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute is a center for the study of Mary, the mother of Jesus. The library holds the largest collection in the world of printed materials on Mary and thousands of pieces of Marian art, devotional items and Nativity scenes from around the world.

For information, contact Sister M. Jean Frisk, S.S.M., assistant for art and special projects for the Marian Library at friskjem@notes.udayton.edu.

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