Old & New Project provides a platform for contemporary graphic artists to exhibit works themed on Biblical stories and passages. It also aims to introduce a new online audience to Biblical art, attempting to replace popular, yet sometimes low-quality, contemporary religious artwork with the kind of accessible and honorable work that has historically been associated with the Bible.
From 2011 – 2015 the work was released in a series of five themed rounds. The goal of these rounds was be to bring new light to well known Biblical passages as well as introducing less familiar (or comfortable) content.
There are a few things that Old & New is very passionate about:
Focus on the Text
Let’s face it, the Bible can be very polarizing. Historically, it has been used to support different sides of a variety of divisive issues. This has left many people with very strong emotions tied to the book, both positive and negative. As much as possible, we want to push all that aside and simply focus on the text.
If you want to learn more about the Bible, there are a lot of complex theological books written for that reason. With Old & New, our goal is that both the art and writing are accessible to all types of people, regardless of how much they may or may not know about theology.
Old & New is not an attempt to convert folks or create religious propaganda. In order to take a new look at this old book, we want, in fact we need, artists from all types of faith perspectives. That may include different religious backgrounds, those who have had a really negative experience with the church, agnostics and atheists.
Honesty over Propriety
One of the biggest drawbacks of contemporary Biblical art is that much of it is very proper, which often comes at the expense of being honest. The Bible is filled with some weird, confusing and improper stuff. It takes honesty to create art around that. For honesty’s sake, the art and writing for Old & New may contain swearing, sexual references and all sorts of improprieties… just like the Bible itself.
Maintaining the “honesty over propriety” value will require some fearlessness. After all, some of the designs might feel hurtful and/or offensive to some folks who see the Bible as a very meaningful and spiritual book. While we never want to be offensive for its own sake, we do think that there are some types of offense that are good, necessary and lead to a greater understanding and appreciation of the subject matter.
We’re excited to partner with and help out charities that are doing some amazing work around the world. Once a design has been posted, prints will be available to purchase immediately through our Society6 shop.
Our contributors have donated their work to this project. Please support these amazing artists.