“Icon & Artifact” Works by Paul Roorda at Doug Adams Gallery

January 15, 2014

In Icon & Artifact, Paul Roorda uses ashes, gold leaf, historical materials, and discarded Bibles to express a neo-liturgical approach to Christian art and ritual. Through his creative process, Roorda gives us works of arresting beauty, imbued with meaning.


The 17 pieces in this exhibition are grouped in three categories: In Slate Requiem, Roorda makes use of slate tiles from an old church roof to examine the tension between faith and knowledge, referencing historical icons for a new time; rusty nails and beeswax create meaning in Encaustic Drawings; and, in The End of the Book, Roorda considers devotion and loss through the transformation of damaged and discarded Bibles into new ceremonial vessels, reliquaries, and icons.


 Silent Word. 2012. Ashes, egg yolk, clove oil, beesewax, and gold leaf. 7x7x2.5 inches.


Icon II. 2012. Bible page gilding, with egg yolk, ashes, clove oil, on board in antique frame. 23x27 inches.*More images available on request.

Opens: February 4, 2014

Closes: May 23, 2014 

About the Artist:
Paul Roorda
lives in Waterloo, Ontario and makes art using discarded books, vintage medical objects, and found materials. His work investigates changing belief systems, the construction of knowledge, and the practice of ritual in religion, science, medicine, and environmentalism.

In Canada, Roorda has exhibited extensively, including shows at the Toronto School of Theology, the Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, the Institute for Christian Studies, Redeemer University Art Gallery, and Wilfrid Laurier University. In the U.S., Roorda has exhibited at the Dadian Gallery at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C. The Doug Adams Gallery is proud to present his inaugural California show. Roorda will introduce new works in a solo exhibition in Hilsbach, Germany in July.

Roorda has been awarded grants from the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts, in addition to becoming a finalist for Australia’s Blake Prize for religious art. His work is found in numerous collections, including the Donovan Collection at the University of Toronto. Roorda has served on the City of Kitchener Public Art Working Group as well as the board of CAFKA, the Contemporary Art Forum of Kitchener and Area. He was the Artist in Residence for the City of Kitchener, and the subject of an episode of “The Artist’s Life,” which aired on Bravo! TV.


About the Doug Adams Gallery:
Located at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California, the Doug Adams Gallery at the Center for the Arts, Religion, and Education (CARE) presents exhibitions of contemporary art that examine themes of spirituality, belief, ritual, and the sacred. Exhibitions support and enhance the curriculum of the GTU, and provide a forum for interdisciplinary and interfaith dialogue.

For more information visit: http://care-gtu.org


Icon & Artifact

Exhibition opening

February 6, 2014

5:00pm- 7:00pm


Free Admission

Refreshments and live jazz music included


Doug Adams Gallery, Graduate Theological Union
1798 Scenic Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

Regular gallery hours: Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, 10:00am- 3:00pm