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Proposing a Cathedral Art Exhibit

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Proposing a Cathedral Art Exhibit

The Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral invites artists and curators in the Philadelphia region to propose exhibitions appropriate for the overall mission of the Cathedral to congregation, diocese, and city as described below.

When the beautiful interior of the main sanctuary of the Cathedral was reconfigured in 2002 as open space without pews, one intention was to create wall space for the display of art works on a rotating basis, primarily from artists in the greater Philadelphia area. There are twelve lit spaces available for mounting framed work and sculptures: ten areas (90" w by 65" h) and two areas (60" w by 65" h).

The nave remains a sacred space whose primary function is as a place for daily liturgies in the Anglican tradition for both our own congregation and for the Episcopal Diocese of Philadelphia. But our understanding of the sacred is sufficiently comprehensive to include the carrying out of an extensive social ministry program in the same space as well as hosting a full range of public concerts, cultural, and civic events presented by outside groups.

The range of artworks displayed also covers the gamut from explicitly religious to secular, from figurative to abstract. We affirm the beauty of nature, of the human form, and of artistic imagination as signs of the divine presence in our world. 

At the same time, we do consider the appropriateness of particular artworks for the multi-use, multi-generational Cathedral space and our mission. The Cathedral sanctuary is above all a public sanctuary for liturgy and prayer, unlike a sequestered art gallery set aside for exhibitions. We welcome exhibitions of sculpture with a sufficiently stable base for our multi-purpose space.

We do not have a list of specific criteria as to what is appropriate and what is not. Rather, this is a judgment call to be made by the Cathedral in consultation with the artist before the art is mounted. We are happy to discuss these issues in advance of a proposal being submitted as well. Feel free to contact Thomas Lloyd at tlloyd@philadelphiacathedral.org to arrange a phone conversation or studio visit.

To submit a proposal, fill-out and email this pdf form or the equivalent information in the body of an email to tlloyd@philadelphiacathedral.org. Include attachments or links to digital images of 10 representative works as described in the proposal. Proposals will be reviewed by a committee of working artists who are members of our congregation, led by the Canon for Music and the Arts. Final approval of all proposals will be at the discretion of the Dean of the Cathedral.

Last Published: May 3, 2019 1:01 PM