EWTN Vatican
Art Exhibition in the Arms of St. Peter’s Basilica: Encouraging Change

Francesca Larrain is one of nine photographers whose work is on display at the exhibition called “Changes.” Hosted by the Vatican, the pieces are located under the colonnade of St. Peter’s Square, throughout the month of May.  

She shared with EWTN, “My purpose is sharing God's creation as you see in the image behind me sharing his love and light. My picture evokes light and evokes emotion of peace, and love, and that's what we're trying to evoke is changes, changes in our planet, in our attitudes. And that's what I'm here for, to advocate through photography.”

The exhibition is comprised of 24 photographs taken by artists from various countries. These images depict the contrast between the beauty of creation and the destruction caused by climate change and how it affects our 'common home' as well as populations worldwide.

In an interview with EWTN News Nightly, Lia Beltrami, one of the curators of the exhibition, explained how the photographs were selected. “It’s a laboratory to bring art and faith together,” she said, “so that emotions that come through art can generate a change, that they can really drive to a personal change and a social change.”

“We do a longer work together with many photographers,” she continued, “trying really to build together a project, and then we select choosing especially photographers from the peripheries, so that the peripheries can be taken into the center and then we have a group, big group, we selected among about 2000 photographs and together with the Dicastery for communication and the Dicastery for Integral Development, we decided which one and Mariana picked the final ones.”

As Marianna Beltrami explained to EWTN News Nightly the combination of the words from the Canticle of the Creatures by St. Francis of Assisi and the photographs can show how art can address significant issues. For instance – climate change – which is a central theme in Pope Francis’ pontificate.

“As artists, this is our contribution, the one of our many contributions, and we think that the power of pictures in a world where communication is so overstimulating and so quick and so fast paced - having one picture that may seem static can tell you a lot more about the world, and also as part of our project it can generate certain kinds of emotions that can really motivate you to do your part. So this is our contribution as artists and we're very glad to be able to do that.”

Adapted by Jacob Stein

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Author Name

Andreas Thonhauser is EWTN Vatican Bureau Chief. He earned a Master of Business Administration from the WU Executive Academy in Vienna and a Master’s degree in German Philology/Anglistics and Americanistics from the University of Vienna. Prior to joining EWTN, Thonhauser worked as the Director of External Affairs for a global human rights organization, and for several media outlets in Vienna, Austria.


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