Numen inest by Paul Vreeland

Search for truth

Pages From the Book of Light: Photography by Paul Vreeland

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Pages from the Book of Light, an exhibition of photography by Paul Vreeland, will be displayed in Memorial Hall of the Confederation Centre of the Arts on October 27 as part of the Unity of Humanity Festival’s Arts Celebration.

The one day show, which features a variety of artists and a diversity of media, explores several universal themes such as the search for truth, and Vreeland’s contribution explores photography as a metaphor for that theme.

Pages describes the practice of photography as a metaphor for the search for truth. One of the text panels gives tribute to an Island photographer and master printer, the late Lionel Stevenson. Vreeland notes, “I regret not taking the time to have learned more from Lionel. During our last conversation, he said something to the effect that, ‘you try again and again; you print and you print again. And when you can make a print that satisfies—one that mirrors what you truly see—one that mirrors the vision you had at the time—when you can do that, you have mastered the print and you know that you can do it again.’”

“And how long might that take?” I asked. “About 20 years,” he said. The veracity of that statement may have been betrayed by the twinkle in his eye.”

The Unity of Humanity Festival celebrates the bicentenary of the birth of the Báb, one of the central figures of the Bahá’í Faith religion—a religion that “enjoins upon its followers the primary duty of an unfettered search after truth, condemns all manner of prejudice and superstition, declares the purpose of religion to be the promotion of amity and concord, proclaims its essential harmony with science, and recognizes it as the foremost agency for the pacification and the orderly progress of human society.”