The Catholic Arts Guild seeks to restore the sacred and beautiful in music, art, architecture.
The Catholic Arts Guild is a lay apostolate based in Chicago seeking the restoration of the sacred in the visual arts. Its mission is to support artists in offering their gifts for the greater glory of God. As they say on their website, “We recognize that Beauty flowing from the Church’s Liturgy helps many to encounter the person of Jesus Christ.”
Based at St. John Cantius Church in Chicago, a parish that was about to be closed but brought back to life when a priest introduced the traditional Latin liturgy and a renewed emphasis on sacred art, the guild is spiritually supported by the Canons Regular of St. John Cantius, a religious community of men dedicated to the Restoration of the Sacred.
Each year, the guild hosts a conference about the power of beauty and its necessity in the work of evangelization. On November 4, the Catholic Art Guild will host its second annual conference with leading artists, architects and theologians, to rediscover the power of beauty in the modern world. The conference, titled “Formed in Beauty,, will feature Alexander Stoddart, Sculptor in Ordinary for Her Majesty the Queen in Scotland; Ethan Anthony, principal architect for Cram & Ferguson; Peter Kwasniewski, Thomistic theologian, liturgical scholar, and choral composer, and Juliette Aristides, Classical Realist Artist, Author & Founder of Aristides Atelier.
The conference will open with an Orchestral Latin Mass in the baroque splendor of St. John Cantius Church. Conference presentations and discussions will take place at The Drake Hotel, followed by an elegant banquet.
The guild also provides networking opportunities for artists and students in the visual arts; skill-based training in crafts such as gilding, illumination, stained glass, and traditional drawing techniques, as well as a juried exhibition.
“We have had many organizations that enliven our vibrant parish, particularly in sacred music, liturgy, catechesis, youth and young adult ministry. It was time to establish a program for the visual arts and the training of artists,” said Father C. Frank Phillips, C.R., pastor of St. John Cantius, who revived the church in the 1990s.
“We want to bring together artists and the Church as partners to proclaim the Gospel to all who enter our doors and hear our message,” said Kathleen Carr, an award-winning, classically trained painter, illustrator, and designer who founded the guild. “I was inspired by the Catholic vision that all art flows from the altar. It seemed natural to form an artist guild with the support of a religious community that lives and breathes the liturgy.”