Crucifixes and Buddhas. The magnificence of the cosmos and the delicate beauty of a drop of dew on a flower. Santos, bald eagles and stained-glass windows blessing sledders and skiers. Sculptures, photographs, found-object art, paintings, yarn, fabric and other media.
These are the images and forms on exhibit at the fourth annual Sacred Arts Festival.
“We have more artists than ever this year,” said Scott Hagler, the minister of music and the arts at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church where the festival is headquartered.
The festival elected not to give jurors and audience-choice awards this year, Hagler said, which allowed organizers to lower the entry fee for items.
Members of Kindred Spirits, an arts group for people with physical and emotional disabilities, entered several works as well.
For the first year, the festival paired with an exhibit at the Durango Arts Center.
On opening night, Oct. 1, about 200 people circulated between the two venues to meet the artists and take their first look at the exhibits.
The festival also included a lecture by art historian and critic Judith Reynolds, a poetry reading and a concert on the first weekend.
Many artists added a statement about what inspired a work or led to its creation.
“I love to experiment with textile paints, discovering new ways to allow the colors to flow together, creating unexpected layers, textures and images,” fabric artist Alison Goss said.
“My painting process always starts with a meditation, which helps me to become more deeply present, ready to play in the unknown with no need to control the result. I love that my thinking mind drops away as I create, and I feel an expansion of my awareness, a larger consciousness flowing through me and into my art. It’s all sacred.”