Praying that it’s over soon…

The world is going through a crisis, a global pandemic, an unprecedented assault by an unseen enemy. Call it what you will, COVID 19 is literally killing us while we’re waiting for our lauded scientists and medical professionals to get us out of this. In the meantime, we’re sitting at home reading, playing, working, singing, chatting, zooming, eating, drinking, crying, watching Netflix and praying that this will be over soon. Praying, the way I see it, is a personal and intimate dialogue with whatever form of Spiritual Other people find comfort in believing in. We’re all searching for ways to comfort ourselves and others during this difficult time and if prayer does the trick, why not?

These thoughts brought to mind an installation I created in 2014 entitled ‘Virtual Angel’.

virtual angel II

‘Virtual Angel’ was created specifically for an international traveling exhibition called AMEN. I was honored to have been selected by CARAVAN as one of 18 Western artists to join with 30 leading Egyptian artists in building bridges between faiths and cultures through Art. Each participating artist received a life-sized fiberglass figure in prayer with which to create a personal expression of prayer.

Close up back

I chose to transform my figure into an angel as angels appear in the sacred texts of Christianity, Judaism and Islam as well as in ancient manuscripts that predate those texts. These winged creatures straddle the celestial and earthly worlds acting as divine helpers, intermediaries, protectors, and emissaries.

But I wanted to find a way to actively engage the public and provide the viewer with an opportunity for personal prayer. By using a mobile phone to scan the QR code I emblazoned on the angel’s chest (below), viewers were able to send their personal prayers to the world with a click of a finger.

Virtual angel III

My Virtual Angel provided a means of bridging the spiritual world and the contemporary digital world. It seemed fitting that these digital prayers are sent to the cloud for safe keeping. I invite you now to scan the QR code and send your own prayers out into the world.

Angel QR

If you do not have a QR code scanner on your mobile phone and wish to send a digital prayer to the cloud, you can do so directly by clicking HERE where you can also read the anonymous prayers that have been sent out by others. And for what it’s worth, I’m sending my prayers out to one and all for a safe and healthy sheltering. Take care. 

Can Art heal the world?

caravan poster cropped

I am a realist. I highly doubt that Art can heal the world.

But I am also a citizen of the world and an artist. If I don’t try to make a difference in the only way I know how, then I may as well raise my arms in defeat. Despite the constant barrage of tragic news coming from all corners of the globe, I still cling to the hope and belief in the common thread of humanity that connects us all. That’s why I am delighted to be participating in AMEN – A Prayer for the World, an interfaith, intercultural exhibition organized by the CARAVAN NGO, bringing together Egyptian and Western artists of all faiths and creeds.

Invitation to Exhibition --CARAVAN

AMEN: A Prayer for the World is opening to the public tomorrow at the National Cathedral in Washington, DC and then moving onto the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in NYC in October. The 48 artists were provided with a life sized fiberglass form of a figure in prayer to do with as we saw fit. I transformed my figure into a receptacle for accepting digital prayers to send to the Cloud. Prayer, after all, is a universal dialogue and I wanted to provide the viewer with a chance to send his or her prayer out to the world. It certainly can’t hurt.

MILGROM front view

MILGROM detail II

MILGROM back view

I URGE YOU TO TAKE 10 SECONDS TO SCAN THE QR CODE OR GO TO VIRTUALANGEL.WEEBLY.COM TO PARTICIPATE IN MY INTERACTIVE INSTALLATION. And if you can come to DC or NY to see this meaningful exhibition, you will be fascinated by the different ways in which artists interpret prayer. 

Angel QR for printing

I will be present at the National Cathedral in Washington DC on SEPTEMBER 20, 2014 BETWEEN 1-3 PM. I hope to see you there. Have a Blessed Day!