ITDS – 1145 American Jesus

Short Essay
This
assignment belongs in the context of visual piety and gives you the
opportunity to apply and deepen your understanding of that notion, based on our
reading by David Morgan. The assignment consists of two parts.
Part A:
Go to the following link and view the
painting “Calvary” by the religious
artist Stephen Sawyer. On your keyboard, keep the ‘Ctrl’ key pressed and
then press the ‘+’ key (repeatedly) to enlarge the image.
.media.tumblr.com/EfFLvTB7Ql9uwc835gcqT3jYo1_500.jpg”>http://16.media.tumblr.com/EfFLvTB7Ql9uwc835gcqT3jYo1_500.jpg

The above link worked fine, last time I
checked. Should it not work properly anymore while our course is underway, you
can google “Stephen Sawyer Calvary” to find
other links to the same image.

Also, there is another
link (see right below) to a commercial website, featuring the “Calvary”
image, but here you cannot easily change the view.
.art4god.com/html/?go=product&id=calvary”>http://www.art4god.com/html/?go=product&id=calvary
However, here the image
is accompanied by some suggestive commentary. .news.com.au/world/artist-stephen-sawyer-gives-jesus-the-chuck-norris-makeover/story-e6frfkyi-1226127197890″>According
to the statement next to the image, Sawyer’s painting has to do with “broken
connections with God” and “our private hell.”
For
this part of the assignment, write a description of the painting and spell out
how these two notions are visually engaged by the artist.
While you should zero in on particular details or items (and what they may
symbolize), this part of the assignment is mostly descriptive. Critical
interpretation is reserved for the next part.

Part B:
Write a viewer’s
response that addresses the following questions:
1) What
was your gut reaction to the painting? What emotions, sentiments, or
associations did it trigger? (If you have encountered this picture before
taking this class, recall what it was like when you first saw it.)
2) What
do you think is the intended message of the painting, and is it conveyed
successfully? How does this message relate to the title “Calvary”?
(Focus on what the image “tells” you, and do NOT rely on, or parrot,
the editorial text beneath the image!)
3) What,
if anything, is “pious” or “impious” about this image?

Format:
Microsoft Word document
(ending with “.doc” or “.docx”).
First page:
Student’s name, course number (ITDS 1145 – American Jesus), and semester (May
2013) at the top, left corner; no separate cover page needed.
Title:
You can formulate your own.
Length:
2.5 pages (ca. 700 words).
Typed:
double-spaced; font: Times New Roman; font size: 12.
Word count:
to be included at the end of your essay.
Page
numbers: Include page numbers (also for the first page).

Submission:
Use regular Word
document (ending with “.doc” or “docx”).

Submit via Short
Essay Drop Box on D2L. If, for some
reason, the drop box does not work, send an e-mail attachment via D2L.

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