JBU Presents Exhibit of The Saint John’s Bible

Press Release Photo
Psalm 107 from The Saint John's Bible

Siloam Springs, Arkansas (March 24, 2011) - The touring exhibit of images from the first handwritten and illuminated Bible commissioned in over 500 years will be showcased at the John Brown University art gallery from March 31 to May 1. The Saint John’s Bible combines traditional elements of its medieval predecessors — written on vellum with quills, using handmade inks, hand-ground pigments and gild including gold and silver leaf and platinum — with contemporary language. The collection on display will consist of twenty five gicleé prints, each created from extremely high resolutions scans of the original work and is printed on Hahnemuhle cotton paper using pigment-based archival inks.

“The Saint John’s Bible is a work of art, illuminating the Word of God for the modern era,” said Charles Peer, professor of visual arts and gallery director at John Brown University. The Smithsonian Magazine called the project, “One of the extraordinary undertakings of our time.” 

 The Saint John’s Bible project officially began in 1998 when Welch calligrapher and illuminator, Donald Jackson, was commissioned by Saint John’s Abbey and University in Collegeville, Minn. to create a Bible for the new millennium. The 1150-page Bible is expected to be completed in 2011.

“We’re thrilled to bring this collection of 25 pages from the new Saint John’s Bible to Northwest Arkansas,” said Peer.  “Such a project in modern times is monumental.  It is a seamless marriage of the very oldest techniques in hand lettering and illuminating with page layouts that have been aided by the use of today’s computers.  The results are a creatively stunning message of faith, love and forgiveness.”

Because of the interest in this exhibit, special arrangements can be made for groups who wish to see the collection outside of normal gallery hours by contacting Jeannie Abbott at (479) 238-8561. Gallery visitors may also view the film “The Illuminator,” a look into the story of the creation of The Saint John’s Bible. Viewing time is approximately 50 minutes.

The Saint John’s Bible Exhibit will open on March 31 with a reception at 6:00-7:30 p.m.in the John Brown University Art Gallery. The exhibit will run through May 1 and is free and open to the public. Gallery hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Friday, and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. For further information, contact Jeannie Abbott at (479) 238-8561.

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