Ung katolsk kunstner illustrerer Langfredag

Hos Catholic World Report leste jeg i dag om Daniel Mitsui (http://www.danielmitsui.com/) a young artist who has, over the past dozen years, established himself as a unique talent, combining remarkable technical skills with a traditional vision of sacred art. In 2011 he was commissioned by the Vatican to illustrate a new edition of the Roman Pontifical, and the following year he established Millefleur Press, an imprint for publishing broadsides inspired by the work of 15th century printers.

Et stykke nede i arktikkelen svarer Mitsui på spørsmålet om hva slags forhold (tradisjonelle) kunstnere opplever i Kirken i vår tid:

CWR: From your perspective as a working artist, what in general is the state of the visual arts within the Catholic Church in the U.S.? What can be done to encourage and help artists?

Daniel Mitsui: It’s unwell. One of the biggest problems is that the institutions of the Catholic Church, such as dioceses and parishes and seminaries, do not dependably defend tradition. Many bishops and priests are hostile to it, and even those that want traditional sacred art are worried about provoking rebellion from the faithful who do not. What emerges as a result is a kind of insipid, just-traditional-enough art that avoids causing offense only because it is easy to ignore.

I feel sorry for sacred artists who depend on institutional patronage. It seems that they expend most of their creative energy fighting for permission to make the best art possible. Art does not flourish under such conditions; to make the best art possible ought to be every artist’s job description. Although I would like to see more of my own artwork in churches, I am grateful that I am able to sell most of my drawings and prints to private individuals. This means that I do not need to fight these battles.

I encourage all aspiring sacred artists to take responsibility for their own formation and to make the most beautiful, most traditional art that they can without compromise. That, of course, would be easier if sound instruction were more widely available. I am trying to fill some of this need myself; I recently started a web log for writing about the principles and symbolism of sacred art, and the methods of making it. I offer there educational material for free download, including coloring sheets and activities for children. …

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