Christian response to “My Sweet Lord”

Wonderfully articulate defense of the sculpture from the rejesus blog:

    . . . “Incredibly the gallery has claimed that the timing of this exhibition is just a coincidence. It’s unfortunate because the timing of this exhibition gives the piece real power. Easter, a festival previously associated with Jesus’ death and resurrection has been largely overtaken by the chocolate industry. Seeing this sculpture at this time of year gives it a real edge.”

And an equally well-spoken counterpoint from Arts & Faith:

    “The cross is bitter. It represents death. It is a horror, and, if it is by grace the instrument of our salvation, it is grace at its most severe and excruciating.

    Two hundred pounds of chocolate connotes decadence, indulgence, delectation, surfeit. At best, it is the stuff of Easter, not Good Friday. The contradiction of medium and message is as jarring as a Good Friday Mass set to carnival music. (I’m ever so slightly reminded of the scene in Flags of Our Fathers in which vanilla ice cream sculptures representing the flag-raising of Iwo Jima are set before the ‘Iwo Jima heroes’ at a gala function — and then drenched in a blood-red cherry sauce.)”

Other comments from the blogosphere:

    • “Quick question… If people are protesting the chocolate Jesus why aren’t they protesting “TESTAMINTS”???”

    • As a friend of mine has said over and over, it is only because of the common knowledge that the Pope does NOT issue fatwas that arteests such as this repeatedly muster the “courage” to poke Catholics in the eye. Let them try this with a life sized sculpture of Mohammed, if they have the stones for it. Let them “explore those themes”.

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    About pcNielsen
    Paul Nielsen founded The Aesthetic Elevator late in 2005. He owns a piece of paper, located somewhere in his house (not on the wall), stating that he earned a B.F.A. from the University of Nebraska around about 2001. While there, he studied studied architecture, graphic design and ceramics, graduating with a degree in studio art. Paul presently serves as communications manager for a small non-profit doing their print design and marketing. He spends as much time sculpting in his studio as possible — which is not nearly enough. Visit his website at

    3 Responses to Christian response to “My Sweet Lord”

    1. Gutsy move posting the “uncensored” pic! I’ll be interested in the responses.

    2. TAE says:

      I suppose I have a different point of view about nudity in art than most Christians. Being an artist myself, participating in figure drawing classes with nude models is not necessarily the sexual experience (for me it wasn’t any of this at all) most people of faith, I fear, assume it is. It’s ironic too that places like Bob Jones, infamous the kind of ultra-conservative Christianity which might all-too-quickly poo-poo the above nudity, have paintings in their own collections with bare-breasted virgin Marys.

      As I asked in a recent post: “How do we (Can we?) strike a balance between the God-endowed beauty of the human body and the mystery of our sexuality? The cynic in me knows it’s a lost cause. The optimist in me can’t help but try.”

    3. Pingback: Painting: Osama bin Laden as Jesus « The Aesthetic Elevator

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