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new collage: lent 1, 2012 - the baptism of suffering

"lent 1-2012; the baptism of suffering"
mixed media collage on stretched box canvas (vintage papers, acrylic paint, glue)
gregory a. milinovich

this is part 1 of a lenten collage series i am doing this year.  i think this will be the third year now that i have done a series of collages for lent, and i find it to be such a valuable exercise that i wanted to do it again this year.  it just helps me to mark the time in very deliberate ways as we move from ash to nails and then to folded gravecloths.  i wish i had the time to take every sunday's big idea and express it on canvas in my own way, but i just don't have the time for that.  still, it would have it's merits for me as thinking about each text and the message that it is speaking to me and our church in a more visual and right-brained way is a completely different approach. 

 this particular collage had to do with our first sunday in lent, which dealt with noah and the covenant God made with him and his family.  during this lent we are focusing on some of the great paradoxes of our faith, and as we began lent we started by remembering our own baptisms, and realizing that sometimes the baptisms that we go through are very difficult, full of suffering and pain.  we acknowledged that there are often floods and fire that mark our days, but that our own baptisms remind us of our great hope: God's covenant with us, not only that the earth will never be completely flooded again, but that our sins are washed away by the flood of love let loose in Jesus. 
these collages are quite small, only 3.75" by 3.75", and 1.75" deep, as you can see by the pictures.  each one of my collages in this series will be the exact size, and will give me the opportunity to collage on the front and four sides of the canvas.  on this one i wanted to symbolize the hope of our baptism, which comes even in the midst of the suffering we experience, by the olive leaf.  even in the storm or the flood there is the promise of new life, thanks be to God. 

of course i've already finished my lent 2 collage as well, and i'll post that in a couple of days, as the journey continues. 


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