Sacred Space and Religious Art

A special issue of Religions (ISSN 2077-1444).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (29 February 2024) | Viewed by 3772

Special Issue Editor


E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute for Culture and Society, University of Navarra, Pamplona, 31008 Navarra, Spain
Interests: Romanesque; digital humanities; representations of Eve in Romanesque sculpture; medieval art and architecture; vernacular and religious literature; theology; sacred plays; body and beauty in medieval art and thought; semiotics; iconography; issues of spolia in Christian and Islamic medieval architecture; 19th-century architecture/neo-medievalism

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

While political and social movements, and “goûts du jour” fall in and out of favour, one element remains present in various ways in our societies: religion, as defined institutionally, experientially/ritually, theologically, artistically, and socially. Any religion involves the sacred. In The Sacred and the Profane, historian Mircea Eliade demonstrates how the sacred is not a moment in history, but rather something constructed and/or established by human beings. Whether determined and established by scriptures, myths, tradition, events, inscriptions and/or memory, sacred spaces are loci of transcendence. “What is a sacred space?” “What makes it scared?” “How does religious art function in sacred spaces?” and “How does a sacred place impact a religious work of art?” These are a few questions in which this Special Issue is interested.

From the sacred spaces of medieval churches, mosques, temples, sculpted façades, manuscripts, and reliquaries to those of the busy streets of Manhattan, museums, or the great outdoors, this Special Issue welcomes manuscript submissions from a multidisciplinary perspective, focusing on the relationship between medieval and/or neo-medieval religious art and sacred spaces.

This call for papers differs from the previous Religions Special Issues entitled, “Sacred Space and Place” and “Sacred Spaces: Designing for the Transcendental,” which both focus on contemporary issues, while not necessarily addressing religious art. Instead, this Special Issue provides a chronological succession to the themes addressed in “Housing the Sacred: Religious Architecture in the Ancient Eastern Mediterranean,” which is concerned with a pre-medieval issues.

Concerned with medieval and neo-medieval art and architecture, this Special Issue—Sacred Space and Religious Art—aims to create a space for interdisciplinary dialogue between history, theology, art history, music, literature, and philosophy. Focusing on religious art, it is also concerned with the interconnectivities between the spatial and the temporal, the sacred and the profane, the philosophical and the religious, the visible and the invisible. Topics may focus on:

  • Space, the sacred, time, and religious art.
  • Religious object as sacred space (i.e., manuscripts, reliquaries, etc.).
  • Medieval façades as sacred spaces.
  • Sacred space and music.
  • Sacred space, narrative, and art.
  • Sacred space and iconography.
  • Sacred space and medieval religious art and architecture.
  • Sacred space and neomedieval contemporary religious art and architecture.
  • Sacred space, liturgy, and religious art.
  • Sacred space, motion pictures and religious art.
  • Sacred space and performance art.
  • Sacred space as palimpsests.
  • Sacred space and spolia.
  • Sacred space, religious art, and the sensorial experience.
  • Sacred space and religious art: then and now.

Please send a 500-word abstract, title, and short biography before June 30, 2023, to the Guest Editor (moubayed@unav.es). The authors will know that their proposals have been accepted before 13 June 2023. Final papers will be due on 20 December 2023.

Dr. Anna-Maria Moubayed
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Religions is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Middle Ages
  • sacred space
  • religious art and architecture
  • contemporary art and architecture

Published Papers (4 papers)

Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

28 pages, 11124 KiB  
Article
Suspense and Christian Culture: Visual Analogies in Alfred Hitchcock’s Movies
by Alfons Puigarnau
Religions 2024, 15(4), 468; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel15040468 - 9 Apr 2024
Viewed by 553
Abstract
In this text, the author analyzes the convergence between Christian culture and relevant films of Alfred Hitchcock’s suspense filmography. Rather than focusing on Hitchcock’s status as a Catholic director, he makes an empirical analysis that allows him to find certain visual analogies between [...] Read more.
In this text, the author analyzes the convergence between Christian culture and relevant films of Alfred Hitchcock’s suspense filmography. Rather than focusing on Hitchcock’s status as a Catholic director, he makes an empirical analysis that allows him to find certain visual analogies between the Christian imaginary and the frames of certain films of the master of suspense. This article understands cinema as a kind of mental, psychological, or spiritual cartography/geography, and this is how it connects to the theme of space, where cinema is not just as analogous to physical space but the experience of viewing as a space. The Christian iconography of death, understood as participation in an eternal time, helps to understand the projection of the concept of suspension of judgment in constructing suspense that is not only iconographic but also spatially ontological. The author also suggests an epistemological connection between the mysterious nature of space in medieval art and architecture and the aesthetics of perfect crime in films. The allegory of Christ’s Passion will be seen as a recurring thread in Hitchcock’s visual analogies. His cinema and his particular way of seeing reality through space continue to demonstrate the validity of his art in writing new episodes in Western culture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Space and Religious Art)
Show Figures

Figure 1

12 pages, 10889 KiB  
Article
The Sacrifice of Isaac Capitals at Sainte-Foy at Conques and Saint-Seurin at Bordeaux
by Kristine Tanton
Religions 2024, 15(4), 465; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel15040465 - 9 Apr 2024
Viewed by 452
Abstract
The period between 1080 and 1160 saw an explosion in monastic construction throughout Western Europe. The textual sources from this period document this building boom and explicitly tie construction and refurbishment to monastic reform and the creation of spaces for spiritual renewal. Newly [...] Read more.
The period between 1080 and 1160 saw an explosion in monastic construction throughout Western Europe. The textual sources from this period document this building boom and explicitly tie construction and refurbishment to monastic reform and the creation of spaces for spiritual renewal. Newly built or remodeled monasteries and churches were richly decorated with wall paintings and monumental sculpture and inscriptions. A new form of sculpture emerged during this period of increased construction—the historiated capital. Despite their small size, capitals in the eleventh and twelfth centuries were frequently decorated with figures of humans or animals, and these images usually referred to a narrative, with lapidary inscriptions serving as commentary to the images. This article will compare two capitals depicting the Sacrifice of Isaac to consider how location and movement around the capitals direct the interpretation and understanding of the narrative scenes and accompanying epigraphy. One capital is in the narthex of Saint-Seurin at Bordeaux, while the other is in the choir of Sainte-Foy at Conques. My analysis involves making connections between the location of the capital within the architectural space and its relationship to other sculpted imagery, monastic interpretations of their spaces, and the liturgical events that took place within those spaces. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Space and Religious Art)
Show Figures

Figure 1

12 pages, 6998 KiB  
Article
Connecting Historic Graffiti to Past Parishes and Beliefs
by Crystal Hollis
Religions 2024, 15(3), 301; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel15030301 - 28 Feb 2024
Viewed by 690
Abstract
Historic graffiti offer new and interesting insights into late medieval and early modern English society. This paper will show the value of studying these inscriptions by discussing two churches constructed in the late medieval period in Suffolk, England, with drawings of two figures [...] Read more.
Historic graffiti offer new and interesting insights into late medieval and early modern English society. This paper will show the value of studying these inscriptions by discussing two churches constructed in the late medieval period in Suffolk, England, with drawings of two figures that potentially represent the Virgin Mary and the Christ Child. These drawings are similar and yet quite different in their quality and execution, and they possibly relate to lost medieval imagery within the building. These images may also have been created in response to various iconoclastic movements that occurred as part of the Reformation as well as after it. This paper seeks to encourage further study on the relationship between historic graffiti and local history by observing the connection between the late medieval parish churches of Lidgate and Stradishall and their respective figural drawings by suggesting that graffiti serve a larger purpose than idle drawing or doodling and instead are valuable pieces of evidence about parish life and values. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Space and Religious Art)
Show Figures

Figure 1

26 pages, 3654 KiB  
Article
The Experimentation of the Sacred in al-Ḥakam II’s Maqṣūra: An Architecture Based on Emotions
by Belén Cuenca-Abellán
Religions 2024, 15(2), 242; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel15020242 - 18 Feb 2024
Viewed by 806
Abstract
The present work will try to delve into some emotional aspects expressed by the community of believers about a section of the Mosque of Córdoba: the maqsūra of al-Ḥakam II. It is important to observe this maqsūra from the point of view of [...] Read more.
The present work will try to delve into some emotional aspects expressed by the community of believers about a section of the Mosque of Córdoba: the maqsūra of al-Ḥakam II. It is important to observe this maqsūra from the point of view of the emotions that it generates during its use as an active sacred space. The maqṣūra of al-Ḥakam II is a space for communication between the political and religious powers within the religious community who attended the Prayer on Friday (Ṣalat al-Jumu’a). This article reviews and expands some hypotheses raised by Professor Ruiz Souza in 2001, where he pointed out the importance of the point of view of the community of worshippers to understand the main functions of the maqṣūra. The worshippers attended the ceremonial and could observe part of the maqṣūra from the shadows of the naves of the old mosque. What did they perceive from a space that was hidden from their gaze? What was this luminous place where the Prince of Believers was located, trying to make them feel? To answer these questions, new methodologies from the History of Art have been used, combined with Anthropology of Religion, the Archeology of Emotions, Color Symbology, Neuroscience and Psychology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sacred Space and Religious Art)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Back to TopTop