Bay Area artist Marianne Lettieri's beautiful installation "Emptied and Consumed" is a response to 2 Corinthians 8:1-9 and the theme of "poverty."
Artist Curated By
2 Corinthians 8:1–9
1 Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia; 2 How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality. 3 For to their power, I bear record, yea, and beyond their power they were willing of themselves; 4 Praying us with much intreaty that we would receive the gift, and take upon us the fellowship of the ministering to the saints. 5 And this they did , not as we hoped, but first gave their own selves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God. 6 Insomuch that we desired Titus, that as he had begun, so he would also finish in you the same grace also. 7 Therefore, as ye abound in every thing, in faith, and utterance, and knowledge, and in all diligence, and in your love to us, see that ye abound in this grace also. 8 I speak not by commandment, but by occasion of the forwardness of others, and to prove the sincerity of your love. 9 For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.
This well-worn hutch was a permanent fixture in my grandmother’s kitchen. It probably had been there during the Great Depression when she worked in a South Carolina textile mill. I remember it filled with home-canned peaches, tomatoes, and green beans that she picked from her garden and shared generously with neighbors. It is a symbol of hard times and giving joyfully out of poverty. In response to the scripture passage, I set the humble cupboard on the dais of a rural chapel built at the end of the 19th century in Northern California. Hundreds of common glass food jars, transformed with silvered interiors and candles, flow from the cabinet and down the aisle. The installation evokes an altar spilling forth its treasure of sacred vessels. Though Christ was rich, for our sakes he became poor, that through his poverty we might become rich.
Marianne Lettieri creates art with everyday objects that reveal the passage of time through repetitive use and daily routines. Her mixed media constructions explore the preoccupations and temporality of life and investigate value systems associated with materials and artifacts. She lives and works in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her artwork is in the collections of the City of Palo Alto, California, Oracle Corporation, San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles, and International Museum of Collage, Assemblage and Construction. She has an M.F.A. in Spatial Arts from San Jose State University and B.F.A. in Drawing and Printmaking from University of Florida. Marianne is a member of the board of directors for Christians in the Visual Arts.