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Theology on Tap



You’ll never see it the same way. Images shape our life in various ways. Mental images are a part of our selves, material images a basis of our memories and our relationship to past and present, media images influence our perception of the world and our place in it, religious images facilitate the relationship with transcendence and provide a vision of order. The study of religious visual culture reveals sight as always grounded in the other senses. With current modernity we have returned to a culture that is characterized by the elevation of sight – most recognizably in the formation of ourselves and our relationships with those around us. Therefore, we need to discipline our eye to the act of seeing in order to cognitively contribute to our spiritual growth and experience.

Much like communal prayer, it is through seeing that we participate with a community of fellow believers. Our shared visual language makes seeing a social bond and thus, like written or spoken words, create a shared existence in which Christ is invited to transcend. During the evening, we will be looking at the role of sacred vessels, the visual gaze of icons, momento mori, evolution of church architecture and sacred space, attributes of saints, liturgical colors, and the transformation of allegorical pagan imagery such as the “good shepherd” and Orpheus into our shared Christian vocabulary. The evening will begin to open your “eyes to see” in a way that will augment your future liturgical encounters.


Lawan Glasscock, a Catholic covert from Calvinism, serves as Executive Director of Madison-based, international nonprofit CIVA | Christians in the Visual Arts. The organization celebrates its 40th year this summer. Glasscock brings more than 25 years of leadership experience in cultural patronage and scholarship. She has assisted domestic and international organizations with ethical stewardship, cultural heritage, ecumenical awareness, and visual language sensitivity. Her previous clients consisted of a wide range of religious, art, and education institutions, including Patrons of the Arts in the Vatican Museum, Gordon College, Presbyterian Church in America, St. Mary’s University, and Christians in Public Service. She currently serves on the board of directors for The Center for Religious Humanism, Image Journal, and is a long-time mentor with Global Shapers Community, an initiative of the World Economic Forum. Glasscock earned her Ph.D. in Archaeology (Paleo-Christian Visual Culture) from the Ratisbonne Pontifical Institute in conjunction with the Gregorian University. She has written and lectured widely on the importance of visual literacy over the ages.

What is Theology on Tap?

Theology on Tap is a monthly event, generally the fourth Thursday of the month, where 20s&30s are invited to join us for free beer and engaging talks by some of the leading thinkers, speakers, educators, innovators, and activists in the nation as they share their insights on various contemporary issues facing young adults today.

Contact: Marc Laudonio