The Guardian has been hosting a series of posts on the question of whether faith is necessary in order to appreciate religious art.
A post by Adrienne Dengerink Chaplin highlights the recent work of atheist artist David Mach to contest the assumption that religious art is necessarily made by believers:
Mach explicitly states that he does not believe in either God or Jesus. Yet, like so many other contemporary artists – from Gilbert and George and Damien Hirst, to Chris Ofili and Tracey Emin – he still remembers and returns to the Bible stories he was told as a child, at home, church or school. For many like him these stories linger on as fertile sources of creative imagination.
Works like Mach’s challenge the assumption that only artists of faith can produce religious art. Indeed, it can sometimes be the artist without faith who does the better job, unencumbered by expectations of conforming to the standard interpretations of either the church or the history of art.
Read the whole article here.