Art Department

Our teachers aim to instill interest and facility in the language of art, its principles and mechanics, as well as the artist’s responsibilities to materials, to beauty, and to the purpose or ends of art, through its study and the students’ amateur endeavors to produce it. The realization that the beauty found in nature or in works of art is but a faint reflection of the Divine Beauty “ever ancient, ever new” is also our intention. We endeavor to fill each student’s imaginative storehouse with images worthy of wonder and to inspire him or her to treasure our Catholic artistic heritage.

“A developed memory is a wondrous and terrible storehouse of things seen, and heard, and done. It can do what no mere search engine on the internet can do. It can call up apparently unrelated things at once, molding them into a whole impression, or a new thought. Without the library of the memory. . . the imagination simply does not have much to think about, or to play with” (Anthony Esolen, Ten Ways to Destroy the Imagination of a Child).

Integration of our curriculum with history and literature is ideal as we hope students will acquire an appreciation for their Catholic heritage and the fruits of art, which can flower into the spiritual life: the beginnings of contemplation. A work of art, according to Father Ashley, is the result of contemplation in some degree, at least a sincere and selfless consideration of truth. Contemplation turns upon eternal truths, and the Church uses all the fine arts to perfect the liturgy—music, architecture, statuary, and painting—to lift our minds to these, establishing a well-ordered mentality regarding life itself. The beginnings of contemplation are not beyond the high school student. Even small children amaze us with their powers of penetration into eternal truths. The deeper the contemplation, the more worthy the communication of truth through the medium of art.