Seeing and Believing

As part of our Diocese’s Adventures in Faith programme, the Rev’d Anne Dyer is offering a course called Seeing and Believing looking at art and theology. I missed the first session because I was in Windsor, but yesterday was the second. One of my little flock and I went to Embra on a bus – yes, a bus! That must be the first time I’ve been on a bus for about 5 years and it was terribly exciting. The things you see when you’re not concentrating on the road. (And the things you do when everyone around you has a free bus pass.) We were a little early so we managed to squeeze in a Starbucks with a bacon buttie which was all terribly cosmopolitan to someone living in the sticks, but of course we’d got the time wrong and walked in 15 minutes late.

First we adored some lovely pics of the catacombs at San Callisto, and then some mosaics from San Apollinare Nuovo, Ravenna and San Vitale, Ravenna, and some Giotto frescos at Padua. All rather gorgeous.

We then moved on to diptychs and Books of Hours, in particular the one shown – Mary of Burgundy’s Book of Hours. (I thought the little angel sitting holding a candle in front of the man in burgundy was actually a West Highland Terrier.) Love the fact that she is using a piece of green silk to hold her book and stop it getting marked.

Then we trekked over to the National Gallery and had a wander round the upper floor where the Netherlandish, early Italian, and Renaissance stuff is. One of my favourite rooms, actually and we got a nice man to keep turning the Scottish diptych for us. Lots of Virgin and Childs to adore.

I also noticed that Poussin’s Seven Sacraments were back in place, having been out on loan when I was last in. My fave is the Eucharist just because the light is so beautiful.

And after a few hours of culture we got back on the bus and meandered home through the back roads of West Lothian.



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