the 1993 annual Artist Members Exhibition
Brian Hannon, former Executive Director, said of the exhibition: “If you’re tired of mere impropriety, the Center for Book Arts’ summer exhibition offers you the opportunity of choose your favorite ungodly indiscretion. The Seven Deadly Sins, an exhibition of artworks by twelve artist members, explores those sins that were once thought to doom transgressors to a certain hell. The show contains works that were selected from over 30 submissions by book artists from across the nation…
Earlier in the year, CBA artists members were invited to submit bookworks that contemplated the medieval Christian belief in seven sins that tempted people away form their place in heaven with the pleasures of this world. These seven deadly sins were defined as pride, covetousness, lust, anger, gluttony, envy, and sloth. The works in the exhibition utilize both traditional and contemporary book formats, and demonstrate a broad range of interpretations and images of the sins. This diversity reveals many fresh, contemporary, reexaminations of these historical/spiritual notions, and includes pieces that are humous, abstract, symbolic, political, and literal.
The Seven Deadly Sins exhibition serves as a visual enquiry into the medieval psychology and the extension of these ideas into contemporary life. Today, most people reject an institutionalized and rigid, moralizing set of standards for day-to-day life, and are not easily deterred by threats of eternal damnation. Our ideas of misconduct differ significantly from those of the Middle Ages, but an overt hierarchy of improper behavior lingers, and might offer us some insight into the limitations of our own self-indulgence, especially in a time with sex can be deadly and greed can destroy the planet.”
Support for the Center for Book Arts’ visual arts programming is provided, in part, by the New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.