Data + Design Project

Polka Popes: Art on a Transitioning Church

Tuesday 03.12.2013 , Posted by
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What is considered sacred? What signifies a tribute and what is blasphemy? It’s often a fine line and subject to the attitudes of the time we live within. German artist Miriam Jonas rides this touchy razors-edge, creating relief portraits of clerics inside tin-cans using a very unusual medium: Play-Doh.

See Also Unique Painted Caricatures by Dom Richards

The result is a lot like a colorful version of art you’d find hidden in the corner niche of a giant cathedral. Displayed together however, her work becomes what she calls Polka-Popes, arranged in a polka-dot pattern borrowed from traditional Spanish culture. The tiny, almost jewel-like figures draw us in to their small world, begging us to explore each individual and contemplate both the past and future of the Catholic church. It’s a timely topic as the church transitions to a new Pope and a new era.

All of Jonas’ work is provoking, both in its brilliant use of color and form, and – like her Polka Popes – in its ability to make us question what we consider normal. Be sure to check out her bleached-out series’ All I Got and Narren at miriamjonas.de.

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Via lustik

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Benjamin Starr

Written by Benjamin Starr



Known in some circles as the most amazing man in the universe, he once saved an entire family of muskrats from a sinking, fire engulfed steamboat while recovering from two broken arms relating to a botched no-chute wingsuit landing in North Korea. When not impressing people with his humbling humility, he can be found freelance writing, finding shiny objects on the internet, enjoying the company of much-appreciated friends and living out his nomadic nature. He is Managing Editor of Visual News. Follow his movements on Twitter:

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