Kelvin Burzon ’12’s art exhibition titled, “Noli Me Tangere,” will be on display Aug. 30 through Dec. 10 at Syracuse University’s Point of Contact Gallery.
“Noli Me Tangere,” “touch me not” or “don’t tread on me,” (Latin) is a series of photographs that examines an internal conflict of homosexuality and Catholicism, according to a university news release. The photographs address, but don’t aim to solve, the contentions between religion and homosexuality.
Utilizing appropriated religious imagery and language, the work is recontextualized by the insertion of LGBTQ members and activists posing as Catholic deities. Themes, lighting and color treatment are adopted from the works of Renaissance artists. The photographs are then presented as polyptychs in the style of Catholic altarpieces.
“I have always been interested in the religion’s role in culture and familial relationships and have been drawn to the religion’s traditions, imagery, theatricality, and its psychological vestige,” Burzon said, adding that his work is inspired by cerebral influences growing up in and around the church.
“My cultural and familial identity, my memories as a child, cannot be separated from the church,” he said. “It was an integral part of what it meant to be Filipino.”
Burzon received MFA degree from Indiana University’s School of Art + Design, where he developed his most recent bodies of work. At Wabash, he studied studio art and music, and became versed in painting, sculpture, ceramics and photography.
While at the College, Burzon was a member of Kappa Sigma and the Glee Club.