Comparative Art Essay

531 Words3 Pages
Comparative Essay Art, Symbolism, and Religion By Rebecca Huot For millennia art has been used as a medium to communicate a message to a larger audience. Whether it is kings glorifying their reign, or people invoking spirits by painting on a cave wall, art has been used to impart ideas. Symbolism is widely used to impart a larger meaning, through seemingly meaningless objects. This technique is used to particular effect in religious art. In Christianity, symbolism is used to signify the importance of a person, event, or place. For example, the star (of Nazareth) is used to symbolize something of great importance, and the halo is used to symbolize someone of great importance#(saints). There are also animals that are used to represent various saints, for example, Saint John was represented by the eagle since he wrote particularly “lofty and mystical [ . . . ] [Gospel]”#. One of the most well known symbols of Christianity is the fish, this is because in Greek the word, ’fish’ was an acronym for, Jesus Christ, God’s Son, Saviour. In the beginnings of Christianity, when followers were persecuted for their beliefs, this symbol alerted people to when there was gathering of believers. Therefore the symbol of the fish is commonly worked into Christian art#. Another thing often seen in terms of Christian architecture, though mainly seen in Coptic churches, is a large cross being cut into the ceiling of the church, which is meant to represent Noah’s ark which saved humanity, this particular use of symbolism, is meant that by attending these churches, people are becoming God’s chosen, the way Noah‘s family was selected by God to save humanity. Islamic art is notorious in way it avoids obvious realistic depictions of people, as they believe that it is a form of idolatry, and Gods, and unlike other religions, artists are not glorified for the art they
Open Document