Art academics join Chester Cathedral on exhibition

University of Chester

19 Oct 2021

Academics from the University of Chester have worked with Chester Cathedral on a new exhibition which challenges perceptions

Global Images of Christ: Challenging Perceptions is open to visitors in the Cathedral until October 30 to coincide with Black History month.

Maggie Jackson, Honorary Research Fellow and Visiting Professor Maureen Wayman OBE, who both support the work of the Department of Art and Design at the University, have worked closely with Canon Jeremy Dussek on gathering the pieces and curating the exhibition.

The exhibition brings together more than 50 paintings and sculptures that challenge the tradition Western depiction of Christ. It has taken more than a year to carefully select and bring all the pieces together.

The display includes contributions from artists such as Mark Cazalet, Peter Eugene Ball, Lorna May Wadsworth and Meg Wroe. Exhibits have come from across the globe including from Africa and Asia.

The exhibition’s central piece is Wadsworth’s depiction of the Last Supper, with her work based on Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper where she portrays Jesus as a black man.

Canon Jeremy Dussek said: “The idea for the exhibition was developed in response to the Black Lives Matter discussion last year and how by working together the Cathedral, University and city could come together to respond in a positive and cultural way.

“We gathered the art pieces to challenge how humans tend to see Christ through their own cultural lenses. This exhibition challenges how individuals see Christ and how he is viewed in other countries. We want to demonstrate that Christianity is for everyone.”

Maggie said: “It has been a privilege working with Maureen and Jeremy to bring together colleagues from the University and the Cathedral for this ground-breaking exhibition. The beautiful images are a testament to how art can break down barriers in the struggle against racism, discrimination and intolerance. A paen to the 21st Century.”

Maureen added: “It has been a busy few months for Maggie and I, but a great experience and visitors to the Cathedral seem to be enjoying the exhibition, so our efforts have been worthwhile. The added bonus has been in meeting or having conversations with some of the artists who have loaned work, for instance Lorna May Wadsworth, Max Kandhola, Peter Eugene Ball, Yvonne Bell and Meg Wroe to name but a few. Six pieces in the exhibition are on loan from the Methodist Modern Art Collection and we have been delighted to welcome several of the trustees to Chester. This important religious narrative collection is already well known to several staff in the Department of Art and Design, as they have been involved in hanging it on two previous occasions when it has been loaned to churches and colleges in the area.”

Global Images of Christ: Challenging Perceptions is open from Mondays to Saturdays between 10am to 6pm and on Sundays from 12pm to 5pm until October 30. Visit chestercathedral.com for more details.