WASHINGTON (December 4, 2003) -- The Face: Jesus in Art, a two-hour documentary that traces the dramatically different ways in which Jesus has been represented in art by people throughout history and around the world, will be redistributed by American Public Television to public TV stations in December.
The program, produced by Thirteen/WNET New York and Voyager Productions, Ltd., in conjunction with the Catholic Communication Campaign, demonstrates that Jesus Christ stands as one of the most pivotal individuals in all of history and has had the greatest influence on global art and culture during the last 2000 years. For centuries, the most important artists painted and sculpted images of Jesus, and their work has had an immeasurable influence on the world's aesthetic today.
The Face provides a travelogue of art and monuments from the early 3rd century to the present, as it takes viewers from ancient Rome to 20th-century America, from Europe to the Middle East, to illuminate the most beautiful and spectacular representations of Jesus and his stories.
In its global exploration of stunning and incredibly varied representations of Jesus, The Face takes audiences up to Michelangelo's Pieta and reconstructs the revered Mandylion of Edessa; it explores the treasures of the Chartres Cathedral and journeys across the Sinai desert to glimpse the Byzantine icons of St. Catherine's monastery. Viewers of this program will visit St. John of Lateran, where pilgrims climb the stairs on their knees and they will descend deep into the catacombs beneath Rome to see the earliest images of Jesus, captured by the light of lanterns and candles.
Amazing digital morphing sequences dramatically illustrate how the image of Jesus has changed over time. Advanced photographic and lighting techniques capture the beauty of the treasures filmed with an archival level of detail and quality. Backed by a team of over a dozen world-renowned art historians, who have helped select images and illuminate the stories behind them, The Face offers not only stunning images but rigorous scholarship as well. The program is narrated by renowned actors Edward Herrmann, Mel Gibson, Patricia Neal, Stacy Keach and Juliet Mills with other notable individuals reading selected passages.
The Face: Jesus in Art was produced with major funding from the Catholic Communication Campaign of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.