What is Holiness: Art at the Abbey


ALBUQUERQUE, NEW MEXICO (ANS)—According to Pope Francis, “Holiness does not mean performing extraordinary things but carrying out daily things in an extraordinary way—that is, with love, joy, and faith.”  In response to Francis’ proclamation, the Santa Maria De La Vid Abbey presents the 4th Annual Art Show and poetry recital.  This year’s theme asks, “What Is Holiness?”  The exhibition opens on November 22 and closes December 13th.


Art At The Abbey

The Norbertine Abbey—which hosts the event—reminds us that “holiness transcends… creed,” reflecting “a diversity of understandings, experiences, and perspectives.”  A simple definition of holiness is “a life of devotion to God.”  In light of this truth, roughly sixty artists, representing various traditions, will present works that address the topic of holiness, a testament of faith and devotion.


Exhibition from 2018. Image used with permission from https://norbertinecommunity.org/.

Samantha Ng attended last year’s exhibition.  Ng states that the event “brought together Christians of various backgrounds, providing a unique vision of the Body of Christ. The focus was on creativity and hope, and I walked away hope-filled.”

This year Ng is a contributor.  Her acrylic painting of a deer in a meadow reflects the idea of being set apart. Ng states, “As Christians we’re called to be in the world, but not of the world. My hope is the painting reflects this truth, showcasing innocence and holiness.”

Abstract Iconography

“St. Elizabeth of Portugal: July 4th.” Oil and acrylic on canvas with gold leaf. 8×10.

As a presenter last year, I, too, was honored that my painting “St. Elizabeth of Portugal: July 4th” was accepted for the event this year.  One of the things that attracts me to the Abbey’s exhibitions is that there are both representational and non-representation works of art (i.e. abstract).  As one who works within abstract-iconography, the broad scope of the arts-infused presentation is refreshing.

Norbertine Community

The Norbertine Order is  nearly 900 years old, one of the oldest Roman Catholic religious orders in the world. It began in the valley of Premontre in France. There,  a small group of men gathered on Christmas Eve in 1121. Led by Norbert of Xanten (1075-1134), they committed themselves to God, to one another, and to the life as the early Christians (see Acts 2).

The Norbertine Community of Santa María de la Vid Abbey is located at 5825 Coors Blvd. SW, Albuquerque, NM 87121.  You can reach the Abbey at (505) 873-4399 ext. 237 or find them on the web at www.norbertineoutreachnm.org or Facebook.com/NorbertineOutreachNM.

Public Viewing

Opportunities for public viewing of the art are between Monday-Friday, 9-4pm, with specific viewing days held to highlight the work.  The viewing days are:

  • Viewing Day #1 – Nov. 27, 6:30-8:30pm
  • Viewing Day #2 – Nov. 30, 11-1pm
  • Viewing Day #3 – Dec. 8, 10-12pm