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Benedict XVI calls on artists to convey hope to the world

2009-11-23

Inside the Sistine Chapel, Benedict XVI also reminded more than 250 artist, of the contrary, that obscene, provocative and transgressive art is the opposite of beauty.

Benedict XVI

"You are the custodians of beauty: thanks to your talent, you have the opportunity to speak to the heart of humanity, to touch individual and collective sensibilities, to call forth dreams and hopes, to broaden the horizons of knowledge and of human engagement.”

The Pope pointed out that even in a world marked by despair, only beauty can return the excitement to the people as long as beauty is not superficial.

Benedict XVI
“Through your art, you yourselves are to be heralds and witnesses of hope for humanity!.”

Santiago Calatrava
Architect

“I believe that in the world and in the moment we are living in, bringing the concept of beauty that he has given ,at this point in time, is essential and it significantly shows.”

Álvaro Siviero
Pianist

“The pope’s words today, were the words we artists need to hear, once, twice, three times, always. Because we need to make our beauty, the beauty that we create, in my case music, a small reflection, a very small reflection of a larger beauty.”

Zaha Hadid
Architect

“Beauty in all origins is about, someone in heaven, how you can create spaces to be like heaven on earth in a way and that’s way there was so much effort to magnification created that not only in one single space but through a city or through large public spaces.”


Authentic beauty, according to Benedict XVI, provokes the desire to learn and to love. In fact, it allows one to contemplate the essence of things and therefore brings people closer to God. The Pope has warned the artists of the heavy responsibility they carry.

Eduardo Verástegui
Actor

“What we need today is for artists to take on their responsibilities and use their talents as a means to heal the wounds of the soul and heat and change this culture of death for a culture of life.”

Susana Tamaro
Author

“We have to realize that art helps man speak to the mystery he carries in him and to talk about life and death.”

Bill Viola
Artist

“We need to know how to go forward and I think if you look historical, the artists have often been the ones to give the image, to give the vision to people as a possibility, as a way to go forward into a positive place”.

The meeting between the artists and the Pope is an effort to renew the relationship between art and the Church. Benedict XVI has invited the artists to maintain a friendly relationship and called for collaboration. He’s also said that the Church needs artists to transmit it’s message of salvation and since art instils inspiration and gives a new meaning to it’s work every time they look to God.

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