By Tanner Corbridge
A student art exhibit based on the Old Testament book of Isaiah is being showcased in the Harris Fine Arts Center this month.
The exhibit, titled “Isaiah,” is a 12-piece collection of paintings and sketches by Jared Miller, a junior in BYU”s visual arts department.
Each piece in the exhibit portrays various sections from Isaiah, a book Miller said is one of the most visual books of scripture.
“To me, some of the greatest passages of scripture are in the Isaiah,” Miller said. “If you can picture what Isaiah is saying, it all comes to life. It”s really kind of cool.”
The exhibit is likely to attract some extra attention thanks to its display of a nude piece – an uncommon sight in the HFAC.
Miller said the nude painting is a depiction of the fall of the proud spoken of by the ancient prophet. It portrays a once-beautiful woman who is ensnared by her own arrogance, eventually causing her downfall.
“I thought it perfectly shows what happens to those who are caught up in arrogance and pride,” Miller said. “They will experience the same results. It also shows the true nature of those who don”t follow God.”
The idea for the painting originated from a sculpture by Rodin, the same artist whose exhibit caused heated discussion of censorship at BYU in 1997.
Another piece in the exhibit originated from Isaiah”s prophecy of Christ being led as a lamb to the slaughter. The painting portrays Christ”s heavenly Father supporting the dying body of his son.
Miller said he wanted to try to depict the unimaginable sacrifice God offered by the gift of his son.
The idea of creating an art exhibit from passages in “Isaiah” resulted from Miller”s enrollment in an ancient scripture class taught by Victor Ludlow, a professor in the religion department.
Miller said he was thrilled by how Ludlow brought the words of Isaiah to life for him. His interest in the ancient prophet steadily increased, and Miller decided he wanted to begin putting on canvas what he saw in his mind.
The results are now hanging on partitions in one of the university”s busiest buildings.
“I just hope students begin to understand a little bit more, or be intrigued a little more with Isaiah,” Miller said.
“I know Jared personally,” said Erin Greenfield, 24, a senior from St. Louis, Ill., majoring in marriage, family, human development. “He”s a passionate person, and that passion is very obviously displayed on the canvas when he paints.”
Miller”s paintings will be displayed in the B.F. Larsen Gallery in the HFAC through Nov. 29.