Sergio Barrale, “Double Vision,” mixed media on canvas, 84 x 65 ft. © Sergio Barrale

The intersection of art and religion is one that arguably dates to the Paleolithic origins of representational images on the walls of caves. Indeed, some art historians believe that most, even all, art ever produced is simply the human mind attempting to make sense of divinity. One artist is bringing this relationship to the fore during a thought-provoking solo show.

“Our Private Religion” is a fascinating solo exhibition currently on view at Last Rites Gallery in New York City. Featuring the new works of ascending artist Sergio Barrale, the show delves into the intersection of contemporary religion and art while also engaging with historical events.

Sergio Barrale, “Hermes Trismegistus,” oil and gold leaf on panel, 84 x 48 in. © Sergio Barrale
Sergio Barrale, “Hermes Trismegistus,” oil and gold leaf on panel, 84 x 48 in. © Sergio Barrale
Sergio Barrale, “Jeanne D’Arc,” mixed media and gold leaf on canvas, 62 x 62 in. © Sergio Barrale
Sergio Barrale, “Jeanne D’Arc,” mixed media and gold leaf on canvas, 62 x 62 in. © Sergio Barrale

The exhibition is on view through April 22; viewers will encounter Barrale’s large-scale graphite and oil pictures, which “strive to shed light on past injustices of organized belief while exploring the changing role of religion for people today,” the gallery said. “The decline of power structures and muddied laws in classical religions has left those in the modern era in a state of refocus.

Sergio Barrale, “Night Book,” mixed media and gold leaf on canvas, 20 x 21 in. © Sergio Barrale
Sergio Barrale, “Night Book,” mixed media and gold leaf on canvas, 20 x 21 in. © Sergio Barrale
Sergio Barrale, “When Sleeping Things Wake,” mixed media on canvas, 68 x 55 in. © Sergio Barrale
Sergio Barrale, “When Sleeping Things Wake,” mixed media on canvas, 68 x 55 in. © Sergio Barrale

“Barrale connects the use of graphite in his work to a naturalistic need for creative expression, and human desire to comprehend contemporary events rooting back to ancestral times. His large-scale works seek to incite a conversation about past approaches to religion as well as capture an outlook on it today as an ethical code, reformed without emphasis on hierarchy, but alternatively on individual truth and morality.”

To learn more, visit Last Rites Gallery.

This article was featured in Fine Art Today, a weekly e-newsletter from Fine Art Connoisseur magazine. To start receiving Fine Art Today for free, click here.

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Andrew Webster
Andrew Webster is the Editor of Fine Art Today and works as an editorial and creative marketing assistant for Streamline Publishing. Andrew graduated from The University of North Carolina at Asheville with a B.A. in Art History and Ceramics. He then moved on to the University of Oregon, where he completed an M.A. in Art History. Studying under scholar Kathleen Nicholson, he completed a thesis project that investigated the peculiar practice of embedded self-portraiture within Christian imagery during the 15th and early 16th centuries in Italy.

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