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Blog : Voices

News and stories at the Smart.

The Religious Experience of Mark Rothko

by Emily D. Crews, Executive Director, Marty Center

last edited on Mon. February 12 2024

Can art and the experience of art be divine? Mark Rothko’s No. 2 offers alternative ways to think about religion. A Smart Sightings reflection offered in collaboration with the Divinity School’s Martin Marty Center. 

Caught Between Text and Image

by Erin Galgay Walsh, Assistant Professor at the University of Chicago Divinity School

last edited on Fri. February 2 2024

The juxtaposition of paintings by Il Pordenone and Noël Hallé reflects the conceit of the exhibition: the value and dangers of comparison. A Smart Sightings reflection offered in collaboration with the Divinity School’s Martin Marty Center. 

Echoes and Cracks in Modernity

by Tatiana Jackson-Saitz

last edited on Thu. January 25 2024

Fourth-year undergraduate Tatiana Jackson-Saitz contextualizes Eve Sussman and the Rufus Corporation’s Tempelhof Tks 5 & 7 with its site, analyzing what the airport means for the film. 

How to Fake a Josef Albers

by Sarah Thau

last edited on Tue. January 23 2024

Second-year undergraduate Sarah Thau investigates the materials, techniques, and provenance of Josef Albers’s Homage to the Square. 

Unfurling Color

by Kristine A. Culp, Associate Professor of Theology at the University of Chicago Divinity School and Dean of the Disciples Divinity House

last edited on Thu. December 28 2023

In an often bloody and fiery world, we must ask how beauty and devastation are construed, how color and valuation are apprehended, and how these considerations will inform us. A Smart Sightings reflection on Sam Gilliam’s Rim, offered in collaboration with the Divinity School’s Martin Marty Center. 

In Defense of “The Crucifixion”

by Walker Byrd

last edited on Thu. December 14 2023

Fourth-year undergraduate Walker Byrd reflects on a noteworthy object with a disputed and fragmented history. 

Mary Magdalene’s Invitation to Redemption

by Karin Krause, Associate Professor of Byzantine Art and Religious Culture in the Divinity School

last edited on Sun. December 10 2023

This depiction of the Crucifixion is special in that its iconography focuses on St. Mary Magdalene, presenting her as a role model for the Christ-loving, repentant sinner seeking forgiveness—and finding it. A Smart Sightings reflection offered in collaboration with the Divinity School’s Martin Marty Center. 

Embodying Religion in Rodin’s The Cathedral

by Lauren Pond

last edited on Tue. November 21 2023

In the first Smart Sightings reflection offered in collaboration with the Marty Center, Lauren Pond writes about the ways in which August Rodin’s sculpture speaks to ideas of embodied religion. 

Keeping Upright

by Avery Echols

last edited on Tue. October 31 2023

An ekphrastic poem inspired by Whitfield Lovell’s Missoura, by gallery attendant and third-year undergraduate Avery Echols. 

2023 Alum Sticker Commission

by Kathia Rodriguez, AB 2019

last edited on Wed. September 27 2023

Kathia Rodriguez reflects upon art as an experience, as a journey, and as a source of wonder, and shares a sticker design inspired by her UChicago student experience at the Smart Museum. The limited edition sticker will be available at the 2023 Student Activities and Resource Fair.