Sacrilege – A Dark, Religion-Themed Group Show

Los Angeles’ Congregation Gallery has coordinated a host of artists to create works around the topic of dark religion. Many Seattle artists showed their works, including Don Farrell, Jethaniel Peterka, and Yvette Endrijautski. You can see some of the pieces, along with notes on why they were created, below.

Don Farrell

In The Light Of The World, Don Farrell has replaced a saintly form with what look liks Islamic geometries and goat-headed divinity. Says Farrell about his work:

“I wield symbols, myths, and visions intuited in my life’s journey to bring viewers to a place before powerlessness and cynicism. I hope that my art encourages you, not only to Think, but more importantly, to Feel, to Love.

The fire of the gods, burning bright – its warmth emanates from the parted palms of the open-hearted. With promethean pleasure, I open the door for all to see their Divinity, to claim their rightful crown.

Every Man and Woman is a Star; Do what thou wilt.”

Cory Benhatzel

Cory Benhatzel‘s symmetrical Satanica Naturalis expresses Satanism in its dualities, with Theistic Satanism to the left and Atheistic Satanism towards the right. Its soft color palette echoes the sentiment that Satanism is not all about blacks and reds, but about the content associated it rather than strictly the aesthetics. To comment more on the matter, she says,

“I think that all organized religion is inherently wrong, but I wanted this piece to make people think twice about Satanism; if they know nothing about it, it is worth investigating and aspects of it can actually be quite beautiful. It’s never wise to stay in a state of blind ignorance; it’s better to find out the facts and then judge for yourself, not just believe what others tell you.

The ravens are flanked by narcissus, a flower that in Floriography (Victorian flower language) stood for egotism, self-love, and self-esteem. This idea of putting yourself first is an important aspect of Satanism. The birds are also holding onto several branches of pussy willows, which form the shape of an inverted pentagram. In Floriography pussy willows hold a similar significance, that of freedom.”

See more of her comments on the painting, along with progress shots, HERE.

Scott Holloway

Scott Holloway presents a series of minimal, gold-leaf encusted macro paintings of ritualistic elements (such as Hand I and Saint II, below).

Other additional images by more than a dozen artists can be seen on the Congregation Gallery website.

Written by
Vee Hua 華婷婷

Vee Hua 華婷婷 (they/them) is a writer, filmmaker, and organizer with semi-nomadic tendencies. Much of their work unifies their metaphysical interests with their belief that art can positively transform the self and society. They are the Editor-in-Chief of REDEFINE, Interim Managing Editor of South Seattle Emerald, and Co-Chair of the Seattle Arts Commission. They also previously served as the Executive Director of the interdisciplinary community hub, Northwest Film Forum, where they played a key role in making the space more welcoming and accessible for diverse audiences.

Vee has two narrative short films. Searching Skies (2017) touches on Syrian refugee resettlement in the United States; with it, they helped co-organize The Seventh Art Stand, a national film and civil rights discussion series against Islamophobia. Reckless Spirits (2022) is a metaphysical, multi-lingual POC buddy comedy for a bleak new era, in anticipation of a feature-length project.

Vee is passionate about cultural space, the environment, and finding ways to covertly and overtly disrupt oppressive structures. They also regularly share observational human stories through their storytelling newsletter, RAMBLIN’ WITH VEE!, and are pursuing a Master’s in Tribal Resource and Environmental Stewardship under the Native American Studies Department at the University of Minnesota.

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