Religion, Religion, Religion
Religious Imagery has been used and over-used for almost any purpose that might not even be religious. The phenomena that interests me is the power these images might have over people. Artists have been inspired by religion, or I dare to argue, Religion has been inspired by art. One way or the other, religious imagery and iconography have been expressed through different media such as the 12th Century Italian painting of the Virgin Mary (The Madonna as Advocate), to the 2002 high-definition video inspired bythe representation of the placing of Jesus Christ in the tomb, Emergence, by Bill Viola (you can find the video here: YouTube).
An interesting phenomena occurs when religious images are reproduced in various and infinite ways. The images become the "real" thing and not what they represent. Jean Baudrillard's Simulations develops this concept further.
I originally wanted to capture the idea that a portrait of religious figure becomes that which it is trying to represent. In other words, a portrait of the Virgin Mary becomes the Virgin Mary in the sense that people attribute sentimental and some times spiritual value to such portrait. One of many examples if the painting of the Virgin of Guadalupe which is now The "Mother of the Americas" (Latin America) and holds more than a religious value, becoming a religion of its own or a cult where the Virgin of Guadalupe is more important than the Catholic God Himself.
In the following still I tried to convey the idea that any picture can become the "real" representation of the Virgin Mary as long as the right conditions (institutionalized propaganda from the Vatican, a religious narrative, and a group of faithful worshipers) were presented.
Here is my first attempt to capture the New Holy Virgin Mary:
So here is my second attempt to capture my version of Virgin Mary:
Model: Katy Abdul
To be honest it did not work. There could not be found any relationship with Virgin Mary so I had to take a new set of pictures.
I stumbled upon a picture of Miles Aldrige that inspired me and gave me a new direction.
I captured images that spoke on my behalf, but the images themselves have a language of their own and are not limited to my own interpretation.
Model: Katy Abdul