Church of the Apostles to host artwork focused on the Book of Psalms

Shirin McArthur

The Book of Psalms in the Hebrew Testament has inspired the faithful for thousands of years. This spring, Episcopal Church of the Apostles will host an exhibit of textile and acrylic works inspired by the Psalms and created by Tucson artist Suzanne Hesh.

Seventy-five works from the 150-piece series, The Psalms: An Artist’s Journey, will be on display at Church of the Apostles, located at 12111 N. La Cholla Boulevard (north of Tangerine), from February 18 through April 30, 2018.

An opening reception will be held from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday, February 18. At this event, which is free and open to the public, the artist will speak about her work, refreshments will be served and there will be music by Dr. Elliot Jones, Director of Apostles’ Music Ministries.

According to Hesh, “The Psalms articulate both the connection to and distance between sensory, worldly experience and deeper, more subtle spiritual experience.” She says that this series is her “response to a personal encounter with the Book of Psalms—as a source of spiritual, emotional and creative inspiration.”

Each abstract expressionist piece in the series is based, not on an entire psalm, but upon a single verse or two which elicited a response in her that had the potential for visual expression. Some of the works are formed from mixed-technique textiles (with fabrics ranging from cotton to silk and techniques including embroidery, stenciling and stamping), while others are composed of acrylic paint on laminated Scandinavian birch board.

Hesh says that her art expresses “big ideas: psychological, social, political or spiritual themes that have personal meaning as well as universal application. I use ideas that have potential to change or challenge an outlook or attitude; events that alter the relationship of people to each other or to the Creator; shifts in my understanding of the deep and complex nature of the human experience that call for an expressed response.”

Hesh believes her work is especially important in today’s world, which is “waiting for poetic expressions of sobering reality, pragmatic hope and renewed connections with one another. The Psalms is an offering of relief from our estrangement from the community of souls that exists beyond our immediate relationships and presents a point of contact with the suffering and survival of people today and in all times of human history.”

Following the opening reception on February 18, the exhibit will be open to the public through April 30. Visitors are welcome Mondays through Thursdays from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. during regularly scheduled church events, special events and by appointment. If you wish to make an appointment, contact the church office at 520-544-9660.