Jan Knap

Project BI-BOx Art Space - “Sia Luce. Un percorso tra arte e spiritualità”

Cattedrale di Santo Stefano, Biella

December 15th 2023 - January 28th 2024

For the end of the year the exhibition “Sia Luce. Un percorso tra arte e spiritualità”, the project of BI-box Art Space curated by Irene Finiguerra, offers inside the Cathedral of Santo Stefano in Biella an exhibition of a unique work.

Created by the Czech artist Jan Knap, the painting represents the Holy Family in a daily dimension, very far from traditional iconography. The work will be visible from Friday until January 28The exhibition is the result of the precious collaboration with the gallery Studio d’Arte Raffaelli of Trento, and is possible thanks to the support of the project of the Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Biella and the Region. Year after year, the idea of introducing contemporary art testimonies inside the cathedral continues to intrigue and stimulate reflections on the works on display and on the ways of expression of the various artists.

Knap’s work, “Untitled”, is an oil on canvas made in 2009. It represents a domestic scene in which a rural Madonna shows a small red apple to the Child Jesus. No thrones and architectural spaces appear, but only a green fabric stretched between two trees to divide the space and give some shade in a serene and bright countryside. In addition to the fabric of Saint Joseph, who wears sturdy twentieth-century shoes, seems absorbed in reading a book, while in the background on the left are in the shadow of a tree a donkey and sheep. It feels like the atmosphere is warm, almost sultry. Little angels cheer the Holy Family with the sound of their flutes, who standing, who sitting on a watering can, while on the right side of the picture we see everyday objects, which make us think of a snack just finished.

Don Paolo Boffa Sandalina, priest of Santo Stefano, comments: The loan of the work of Jan Knap is an important occasion for us to bring to the Cathedral a work of art that tells in an unusual way and outside the traditional iconography of the figure of the Child Jesus. The consent to the loan by the gallery Studio d’arte Raffaelli of Trento shows us the attention for the project Sia Luce that over the years is also becoming a virtuous example of contemporary sacred art spread in our churches».