Date Published: Oct. 3, 2017
The Beatrice M. Haggerty Gallery proudly announces the opening of “Moments,” featuring the Vietnamese Catholic priest Rev. Martin Lam Nguyen, C.S.C., who will transform the gallery into a large retrospective exhibition ideal for quiet meditation and mindful reflection on the present moment.
An opening reception for “Moments” is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017, from 6-8 p.m. The exhibition is available for viewing Oct. 5 through Nov. 5. An artist catalog is being published for the occasion of the exhibition and will be available at the closing reception on Friday, Nov. 3, 2017, from 6-8 p.m.
A devoted priest, long-serving educator and accomplished artist, Nguyen brings the many parts of his life into focus. Meditation and prayer join the rhythmic stroke of intricate line work in drawings, like ink and water on paper; lessons from a life marred by war mixed together with joyful religious service.
"This is a room for meditation, which really resembles life: the connections, the disconnections, the facts, the fragility of it all, and yet the power of life," said Nguyen, associate professor at the University of Notre Dame in the Department of Art, Art History and Design.
The exhibition brings together three multi-year projects: “Mountain Waits” (1998-1999), “Lucie” (2001-2005), and “Painting the Social Network” (2007-present). Occupying every inch of the Haggerty Gallery, the installation features thousands of cataloged moments, each carefully painted or drawn, and then presented in a grid-like format. The result is abounding repetition permeated with individuality, as each picture, like the moments they depict, is unique and personal. "Many things are sad, but the bottom line is how life is good," said Nguyen. "Life is very precious.”
In 1979, Nguyen fled Communist Vietnam to become a priest of the Congregation of Holy Cross a decade later. After entering the priesthood, he joined the University of Notre Dame Art Department in 1989 as an associate professor, where he continues to teach.
Image Credit: Father Martin Lam Nguyen in his studio, 2013, Photo by Matt Cashore/University of Notre Dame
Visit the Haggerty Gallery for more information.