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The University of Arizona Museum of Art and Archive of Visual Arts

Virtual Members Talk | Visualizing the World of Ancient Christianity

Image: Mosaic Christ as the Sun God, found in the Tomb of Julii in the Vatican necropolis in Rome

May 3, 2021 @ 12:00 p.m.

Presented by Dr. Courtney Friesen, Associate Professor of Classics

The visual world of Christianity emerged in a religious context between biblical prohibitions against divine representations on the one hand, and the art and architecture of Greeks and Romans – replete with gods and heroes – on the other. The earliest Christian art, therefore, represents a negotiation between these competing interests. This talk will explore examples of such religious interplay in antiquity together with suggestions towards its legacy in later periods.

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Image: Mosaic Christ as the Sun God, found in the Tomb of Julii in the Vatican necropolis in Rome