Faith can be many things. The word “faith” can refer to a religion, a belief, something existential, something abstract.
In Faroese society, faith has played a large role. If we look at religion, Christianity has the biggest presence in the Faroe Islands, while during the Viking period and antiquity, it was the belief in the ases, a pagan faith, which was the main religion in the Nordic countries.
Historically, artists have been commissioned by the churches to make altarpieces and other works. As a result, religious motifs play an important role in the global art history. For instance, most of us recognize motifs such as The Last Supper, The Crucifixion of Jesus, and the Pietà. For this reason, it can be easily argued that faith and art are intimately linked and have a striking bond. Not least, art possesses the qualities to create nearly religious experiences.
But how is faith depicted by Faroese artists, and what is the role of faith in Faroese art history? This is what the exhibition “Image and faith” at the National Gallery of the Faroe Islands seeks to answer. The exhibition includes works by some of the foremost artists from the Faroe Islands and consists of works from the collection as well as loaned works.