Skype Sessions with The Sisters of the Holy Cross in Sao Paolo, Brazil – Lynn Marie Kirby, Truly Sisters

Truly Sisters was a installation for Thresholds of Faith: Four Entries into the Beyond. Four artists from different faith perspectives were commissioned to make work for this exhibition and Lynn Marie Kirby was taking a closer look at Catholicism - a religion she grew up with and respected but had many questions about. As the curator of this exhibition I requested that each artistic activate their gallery alcove over the course of the exhibition as way to garner public participation with the projects. In my view, it was a challenge mixing the contemporary art world with religion and we needed people to know that important issues were being addressed at Manresa Gallery (a gallery inside the beautiful, grand, St Ignatius Catholic church).

Kirby was very aware of the hierarchy of the Catholic church structure and this was a celebration of the hard work women of the cloth were doing. Over the course of the five month show,  Sisters of the Holy Cross living in Sao Paolo, would skype with the St. Ignatius parishioners and the general public live in the gallery. For  many, it was the first time they really understood the role of these women and the transforming  and compassionate work they were doing in regards to social justice and education.  In San Paolo these highly educated Sisters were helping to provide legal service to women accused of drug trafficking and in some cases these same women were forced to be drug mules and were being held with no ability to speak the language. The Sisters also started a dance and performance school to help children respect their physical bodies - this had proved to be a successful way to deter drug abuse which has become an epidemic.