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Snite Museum Receives Grant For Religious Art Initiatives

The University of Notre Dame's Snite Museum of Art received a nearly $2.5 million grant from the Lilly Endowment, the bulk of which will fund a new permanent fellowship on religion in the arts.

Museum Director Joseph Becherer said the fellow will join the Snite’s education department for up to two years. 


There, they will create classes, programming and lectures around how spirituality has been depicted in the visual arts throughout the years.


“If you look back over the whole history of art, you realize that religion  – whether it be Christianity or whether it be Islam or Buddhism – has been integral to the visual arts since the beginning of time," Becherer said. "So there’s a lot of material that’s there.”


The grant will fund two exhibitions over the next five years that will also focus on the roles religion and spirituality play in the visual arts. Becherer said the exhibits will offer museum patrons a chance to encounter new religious motifs, as well as ones they may be familiar with.


“It gives us an opportunity to think about and understand and appreciate traditions that are different than the ones that we practice,” Becherer said.


Becherer said the fellowship application could be posted as early as summer 2021, but any exhibits or programs are still some years in the future. 


Contact Gemma atgdicarlo@wvpe.orgor follow her on Twitter at@gemma_dicarlo.


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Gemma DiCarlo came to Indiana by way of Athens, Georgia. She graduated from the University of Georgia in 2020 with a degree in Journalism and certificates in New Media and Sustainability. She has radio experience from her time as associate producer of Athens News Matters, the flagship public affairs program at WUGA-FM.