By Tess Sanders
This time of year, the Brooklyn Borough Hall is ablaze in all its holiday glory. But its current display, in particular, more clearly conveys the spirit of Christmas than any number of colored lights.
From now until Jan. 14, 2015, Brooklynites and visitors can see–for the first time in this country–papers that belonged to St. Francis of Assisi. The exhibit, Frate Francesco: Icons, Words, and Images, features documents from the early thirteenth century that capture the spirit of this extraordinary individual.
The show, which originally appeared in Rome, was displayed at the United Nations prior to coming to Brooklyn. These documents have only been viewed in Italy before this year.
The exhibition is divided into three sections:
- Icons in the documents that closely witness the historical life of Francis
- Words relating to the life of the saint
- Images in miniatures portraying him in various ancient contexts
St. Francis’ virtues of compassion and connection are more important than ever nearly one thousand years after he lived. Francis sacrificed his life and wealth in service of the poor, and his commitment to his fellow man transcends all religions.
At the recent opening reception, his spirit was in the air.
Golly, I had wished I knew that this was there. i would have gone.
If any loves 15th Century Italian manuscripts as much as I do, an Aldus Manutius exhibit will be at the Grolier Club in Manhattan thru the end of April.
Susan Figliulo says
Ah, Tess, what a lovely exhibit this must have been! I’m sorry to have missed it, though from far-off Portland, it’s almost as convenient to go to Italy as Brooklyn! And speaking of Francis, isn’t it heartwarming that Il Papa chose Francis as his name and, apparently, his inspiration? A welcome sign of humility, and you don’t have to be Catholic to think that’s great!