Grace – Fine Arts

Cristina Zerr

FINE ARTS

“I have been a talented artist since birth, but it wasn’t until I found myself sitting in prison on death row that I began using the Godgiven force that I was gifted with.“     -Kenneth Reams 

Introductory remarks:

Kenneth Reams, an Afro-American US citizen, has been under solitary confinement for the past 25 years. In spite of the mental and emotional stress of facing death, he managed to rehabilitate himself. In a state of exception, he chooses to live before death. Art is a crucial moment in his process of healing and dealing with violence. The French philosopher and mystic Simone Weil writes „Grace fills empty spaces, but it can only enter where there is a void to receive it, and it is grace itself which makes this void.“ In the class about GRACE we will contemplate the art works of people who are in death row and discuss the concept of grace in this state of exception, where art becomes an act of affirming live.