Friday January 20, 2012

Between Heaven and Earth

Small sculptures depict the joyful presence of Mary in a new exhibit at the Marian Library gallery.

The University of Dayton's Marian Library gallery will feature an exhibit of sculptures by Cincinnati artist Barbara Trauth, who creates small-scale works with a special feel for Mary, the mother of Jesus.

"Between Heaven and Earth: Small Sculptures of Our Lady" will run Wednesday, Feb. 1, through Sunday, April 15, on the seventh floor of Roesch Library. Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and Saturday and Sunday by appointment by calling 937-229-4214.

Trauth will be on hand for an artist's reception in the gallery 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 16. The exhibit and reception are free and open to the public.

"There exists a definite contrast between Trauth's sculptures and her two-dimensional art," said the Rev. Johann Roten, S.M., Marian Library director of research and special projects. "The paintings are of strongly figurative nature conveying the peaceful beauty of children and nature. Her sculptures show a marked expressionist tendency.

"Reminiscent of some of the famous German artists of the mid-twentieth century, such as Kaethe Kollwitz, her small sculptures illustrate how much human beings find themselves torn between heaven and earth, between the dynamism of the spirit and the gravity of worldly realities."

The exhibit features 10 small sculptures and 15 acrylics and watercolors, many featuring children and the landscape around Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina, where Mary reportedly appeared to children in 1981.

Born in Cincinnati, Trauth graduated from Edgecliff College with a degree in fine arts with a concentration in sculpting. She worked as an illustrator for Gibson Greeting Cards Inc., Shillito's department store and the Cincinnati Post and Cincinnati Enquirer newspapers.

University of Dayton's Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute is a globally recognized center for the study of Mary, the mother of Jesus, and holds the world's largest collection of printed materials and artifacts devoted to her. The collection includes more than 100,000 books and pamphlets in more than 50 languages, and a vast collection of nearly 3,000 Nativity sets and Marian art from around the world.

For directions and more information on the Marian Library, visit or call 937-229-4214.

Sister M. Jean Frisk, I.S.S.M., assistant for art and special projects for the Marian Library at