The Prophetic Principle: Biblically Affirmed Nude Art

Heath, Sam, Religious Studies - Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, University of Virginia
Jones, Paul, Department of Religious Studies, University of Virginia

This thesis proposes a theological framework called the "prophetic principle" to be used when evaluating certain forms of nude art. The prophetic principle simply stated is this: the way in which some modern and contemporary artists use nudity in their paintings acts as and aligns with one strain of Old Testament prophecy—a word of judgment against oppression or injustice. Isaiah 20, where Isaiah prophesies nude for three years, is considered as a starting point to consider how Christian Scripture conceives of the body as something good but that requires boundaries. Theologians with whom the work interacts are Augustine, Paul Tillich, Nicholas Wolterstorff, and Jeremy Begbie. The thesis lays out a theological framework for the body and outlines the parameters of the prophetic principle before spending the remainder of the work applying the prophetic principle to two artists: Nikolai Getman and Eric Fischl.

MA (Master of Arts)
Jeremy Begbie, Isaiah, religion, Nikolai Getman, nudity, painting, expressionism, sexuality, sex, Christianity, My Name Is Asher Lev, naked, modern art, Chaim Potok, Eric Fischl, Art, body, theology, bodies, Paul Tillich, Nicholas Wolterstorff
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