Faith & Art

I’ve published on religion and art for Jewish, Catholic, Mormon, and Arab American press, on topics ranging from idolatry and the Second Commandment to biblical interpretation.

My review of R. Crumb, The Book of Genesis (W. W. Norton & Company, 2009); Aaron Freeman and Sharon Rosenzweig, The Comic Torah: Reimagining the Very Good Book (Ben Yehuda Press, 2010); Tom Gauld, Goliath (Drawn & Quarterly, 2012); and Sheldon Mayer (story) and Joe Kubert and Nestor Redondo (art), The Bible (DC Comics,2012) appeared in Vol. 6 (2013), 173-178 in the academic journal Images, published by Brill. (See full Scribd file at bottom of page.)

My review of Melissa Müller and Monika Tatzkow, Lost Lives, Lost Art: Jewish Collectors, Nazi Art Theft, and the Quest for Justice (New York: Vendome Press, 2010. 256 pp.) and Peter C. Sutton, Reclaimed: Paintings from the Collection of Jacques Goudstikker (New Haven, Connecticut: Yale University Press, 2008. 224 pp.) appeared in Vol. 5, No. 1, 2011 (pp. 135-138), also in the academic journal Images. (See full Scribd file at bottom of page.)

An article I wrote about Rembrandt, Jacob van Ruisdael, and the Jewish community of 17th century Holland was cited in a footnote in the catalog, Rembrandt and the Face of Jesus (Yale University Press, 2011), edited by Lloyd DeWitt, and with preface by Seymour Slive and contributions by Lloyd DeWitt, Blaise Ducos, Franziska Gottwald, George S. Keyes, Shelley Perlove, Larry Silver, Ken Sutherland, and Mark Tucker. The catalog accompanied an exhibit which traveled to the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Louvre, and the Detroit Institute of Arts.


Menachem Wecker. “Jerusalem.” (2002) 18″ x 24″, acrylic on canvas.

I presented on “Art History 2.0: A Religion and Art Blog as a Model for a New Critical Approach” on the panel “The Beam in Thine Own Eye: Criticism and Aggiornamento,” chaired by Andrea Ferber, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, at the Mid-America College Art Association Conference 2008 in Indianapolis, and on “Pinning the Kabbalistic Tail on [William] Blake” at the 6th annual Graduate Student Symposium in The History of Art in Oct. 2008 at the Katzen Arts Center at American University in Washington, D.C.

I was also part of the first annual meeting (2008) of the Contemporary Art Think Tank, “Resistance in Contemporary Art,” at the Phillips Collection Center for the Study of Modern Art in Washington, D.C.

In January of 2009, I moderated the panel “Mormon Art: Definitions and Directions” at a conference of Sunstone Magazine – Mormon Experience Scholarship Issues and Art. Here’s the panel blurb:

Spencer W. Kimball declared that the full story of Mormonism has yet to be written, painted, sculpted, or composed — and the task of Mormon artists is to accomplish this. How close are they? This panel gathers a group of Mormon artists in a variety of disciplines to address several questions: Does such a thing as Mormon art exist? If so, what is it? If not, should it exist? What’s the relationship between those two words? How is the faith of artists who are Mormon expressed in their work? Or is it? Should it be?

My blog on faith and art for Houston Chronicle can be viewed here. I also wrote on art for the Brooklyn, N.Y.-based The Jewish Press (see here) from 2003 to 2012, and was an artist in residence at the Makor gallery (of the 92nd Street Y) in Manhattan, where I exhibited five drawings on the Wandering Jew. (Click here to see a PDF of Joanna L. Brichetto’s thesis, which was submitted to the faculty of the graduate school of Vanderbilt University and which references my Wandering Jew project.)

I’m also cited, or quoted, in several books and academic papers (Google Scholar citations), including:

  1. Laura-Edythe Coleman. Understanding and Implementing Inclusion in Museums (Rowman & Littlefield, 2018).
  2. Ben Schachter. Image, Action, and Idea in Contemporary Jewish Art (Penn State Press, 2017).
  3. Helen Tolstoy. Akim Volynsky: A Hidden Russian-Jewish Prophet (BRILL, 2016).
  4. Melissa Brotton. Ecotheology in the Humanities (Lexington Books, 2016).
  5. Madueme, Hans. “Adam and Eve: An Evangelical Impasse? -A Review Essay” in Christian Scholar’s Review. 45.2 (2016): 165-183.
  6. Stanley Meisler. Shocking Paris: Soutine, Chagall and the Outsiders of Montparnasse (Macmillan, 2015).
  7. Joanna Auron-Górska. Describing Who?: Poland in Photographs by Jewish Artists, (Warsaw Studies in Jewish History and Memory), Peter Lang GmbH: Nov. 2014.
  8. Norman Simms. Alfred and Lucie Dreyfus in the Phantasmagoria (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2014).
  9. Faezeh Faezipour. “‘Imaginary Coordinates’: Balancing Political Boundaries and Crossing Invisible Lines.” M.A. thesis, Temple University, 2014.
  10. Harry Brod. Superman is Jewish?: How Comic Book Superheroes Came to Serve Truth, Justice (Simon & Schuster, 2012), 59.
  11. Dora Apel. “War Culture and the Contest of Images.” (Rutgers University Press, 2012).
  12. Chelsea Ryanne Behle. “‘Art is Love is God’: Wallace Berman and the Transmission of Aleph, 1956-66,” M.S. thesis, department of architecture, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, June 2012.
  13. Kellie Kotraba. “Reshaping the ‘God Beat’: How Three Community News Websites Frame Religion,” M.A. thesis, University of Missouri, May 2012 (Thesis supervisor: Debra Mason).
  14. Norman Simms. “Alfred Dreyfus: Man, Milieu, Mentality and Midrash” (Academic Studies Press, 2011).
  15. Estelle Alma Maré, “The Biblical account of Moses receiving the Tables of the Law and a pictorial interpretation of the event by Jacopo Tintoretto,” South African Journal of Art History, Vol. 26, No. 1, 2011, 67-73.
  16. Matthew Baigell. “Archie Rand: American Artist with a Judaic Turn.” In Images: Journal of Jewish Art & Visual Culture; Jan. 2009, Vol. 3 Issue 1, p57-79.
  17. Daniel R. Langton. The Apostle Paul in the Jewish Imagination (Cambridge University Press, 2010), 178.
  18. Rhoda Rosen, “Mapping Dystopia: Maps, Museums and the Nation,” Ph.D. thesis, University of Illinois at Chicago, 2009, 107.
  19. Hala Abdul Haleem Abu Taleb, “Gender, Media, Culture and the Middle East,” Ph.D. diss., Washington State University, 2009.
  20. Ricia Anne Chansky, “Language Beyond Words” Alternative Discourse as Rhetoric, Metaphor, and Pedagogy,” Ph.D. diss., Illinois State University, 2009, 17.
  21. James Oles, “Frida Kahlo,” CAA Reviews, Aug. 19, 2008.
  22. Jacquelyn Tuerk, “Art Once Stolen by Nazis, Now Enjoyed by Us,” in Comparative Cultures Journal, Dennis B. Klein, ed., Vol. 5, “The Bystander: On the Politics of Disengagement,” Dr. Julia Nevárez, ed., 37.
  23. Blaine Brownell, “Assembling Light,” Journal of Architectural Education, Vol. 62, No. 2, 30-36, Nov. 2008
  24. Alia Nour-Elsayed. “The Making of the Dahesh Museum of Art: An Account of its Founding, Ten-Year History, Its Academic Art Collection, and Exhibitions,” M.A. thesis, Seton Hall University, fall 2005

Below are embedded versions of my articles in Images.

Graphic and Comic Torahs Are Fruitful, Multiply

An Update on Holocaust Restitution Cases