1: Jacquiline Creswell: Curating in Sacred Spaces

Exhibiting Faith

Aug 30 2022 • 57 mins

David Trigg speaks to curator and visual arts advisor Jacquiline Creswell, who for 12 years was the driving force behind Salisbury Cathedral’s pioneering visual arts programme.

Since 2009, she has organised more than 45 exhibitions in sacred spaces, presenting modern and contemporary works that reflect on our shared humanity, encourage spiritual responses, and demonstrate art’s power to transform and renew.

Raised in South Africa in a Jewish family, Creswell studied art and graphic design in Johannesburg, and practiced as a sculptor before the demands of motherhood intervened. Having moved to the UK, she returned to making art in the 2000s, working alongside two stonemasons who had worked at Salisbury Cathedral. Through this working relationship, and helping a friend with a fundraiser at the cathedral, she became enamoured with the awe-inspiring space, but it was seeing an exhibition of sculpted angel heads there in 2008 by artist Emily Young that really piqued her interest in the intersection of art and faith.

Jacquiline talks about how she started curating in sacred spaces and the challenges of placing modern and contemporary art in places of worship, how she takes risks as a curator and how her own faith has informed her work. She also discusses the ways in which art in churches and cathedrals can help people to connect with the things of faith and bring communities together, from Michael Pendry’s installation Les Colombes, presented in the aftermath of the Salisbury Novichok attacks, to Together We Rise at Chichester Cathedral, an exhibition by artists from the Royal Society of Sculptors programmed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic (until 6 September, 2022).

Artworks discussed in this episode can be viewed online via Jacquiline’s website: https://visualartsadvisor.org and on Instagram @exhibitingfaith

Learn more about Together We Rise: https://www.chichestercathedral.org.uk/together-we-rise

Follow @visualartsadvisor and @togetherwerise2022 on Instagram

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