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Review: A Prayer is a Prayer is a Prayer at Andrea Meislin Gallery

Posted By Administration, Saturday, September 15, 2012
Updated: Friday, January 3, 2014

Inaugural Exhibition

Through October 13, 2012

A Prayer is a Prayer is a Prayer is as fitting a show as any to inaugurate the gallery's new grond-floor location at 534 West 24th Street. The cast of exhibiting artist is as extensive as it is impressive. Works by 18 artists, including Lili Almog, Ourit Ben-Haim, Orit Ben-Shitrit, Rina Castelnuovo, Michal Chelbin, Blake Eskin, Barry Frydlender, Noel Jabbour, Leora Laor, Naomi Leshem, Loretta Lux, Jackie Nickerson, Sebastiao Salgado, Pentti Sammallahti, Mark Steinmetz, Andrea Stern, Angela Strassheim, Sharon Ya'ari, and Liu Zheng to be included.

Together the works of these artists form a mosaic of international faith including Christian, Jewish, Muslim, and Buddhist worshipers from China, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Ukraine, and the United States. As we file past the frames we feel the intense power of a larger spirit. Belief in the hearts of the captured faithful is felt with such power that it seems to vibrate from the frames in waves that enter our own space, our own person.

What is so lovely and touching about the work is the unity that emerges in a desire to believe in something greater- something more powerful than humankind. There proves to be both a primal and a contemporary element to faith and prayer, devotion and belief. The range in local speaks both to tradition and to the modern every day- we find the faithful in houses of worship and in the open, at sites of conflict and sites of spiritual tradition. More common-place situations also appear to be "home" to faithful. Believers appear in subways, a street bench, even a McDonalds. Divinity is proven to have ability to survive anywhere it finds a believer. Power too is equalized; mass gatherings seems equally potent to moments of simple solitary reflection.

The works in A Prayer is a Prayer is a Prayer spark something inside us- believers or not, something stirs within our own spirit. We see here proved that hope and belief are universal. Though faith itself may vary this exhibition finds a sense of unity that leaves us wondering if it may indeed take all our voices in a diverse calling out to allow humanity to transcend.

Photograph Magazine Review

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