Sunday, October 26, 2008

Lutheran Surrealism

Last year, I was surfing the web and stumbled on this blog, By this college professor who's into surrealist poetry and philosophy who became a Lutheran. His mind bending writing inspired me to PhotoShop a few of the great Surrealist paintings (that weren't totally lewd). Just in time for Reformation (October 31) Scary, huh?

Yeah, I stayed at school and waited for Parent/Teacher conferences to start, so I was REALLY bored. I promise I'm not on drugs, and I won't be offended if you don't "get it." I have kind of a weired sense of humor.

If you think they're funny, feel free to pass them on. Maybe we can start a cult or something.
Happy Reformation Day.

The persistence of litergy
Just like Salvador Dali's 'Persistence of Memory.' I used the LCMS's new "Lutheran Service Book from CPH because I couldn't find a good picture of the old blue 'Lutheran Worship' or what i was really looking for, the red 'Lutheran Hymnal.'

This is not a beer stein
ala Rene Magritte's famous, "This is not a pipe."

It's the Great Pumpkin, Karl Barth!
Robert L. Short in his book 'The Gospel According to Peanuts' pointed out that "Charlie Brown" may have been a cleverly devised literary device for cartoonist Charles Schultz to inject the ideas of the great twentieth century theologian "Karl (Charles) Barth (Brown)." Since he was one of my heroes, I always secretly hoped that since he was from Minnesota, Schultz was Lutheran, but I think actually he may have belonged to the Church of Christ or something like that. So what if Schultz wasn't a surrealist! Reformation and Halloween are the same day, so I'm allowed to take a little license. I always felt that Linus was more like Kierkegaard, but Barth's hair is kind of crazy like Linus's is in this picture. Really, Dietrich Bonhoeffer's face and head look more like Charlie Brown, but how can you satirize someone who was martyred by the NAZI's, I mean, come on, some things are sacred.

This year I decided to revisit the theme of Lutheran Surrealism, so here is a whole new batch of weirdness- A second helping of surrealist pot-luck Lutheran hot-dish! I've added several new Lutheran surrealist works to this gallery, just in time for Reformation!

Martin Luther as Mexican muralist David Alfaro Siqueiros. (works for dia de los Muertos too).

C.F.W. Walther with Dali's mustache.

Phillip Melancthon can't sleep, based on one of Salvador Dali's more famous works.

Photo of Luther as surrealist Rene Magritte. No special meaning, just kinda weird and cool.

Frau Katie, little deer- obviously based on the Frida Kahlo painting

Indestructible Liturgy, based on Man Ray's "Indestructible Object." I guess while I love the traditional liturgies, I don't have any hang ups about contemporary worship like some Lutherans, but nor do I think we should throw the baby out with the bath water either. Once upon a time what Luther and Bach did was counter-cultural and iconoclastic.

The Holy Spirit upon Erasmus, based on some renaissance painting and one by Rene Magritte.


  1. Ted,
    I read your column and disagree with you a fair amount of the time. :+) However, I loved your surrealistic portrayal for Reformation. In fact, I shared this with my kids and we all had a good laugh. Keep the lights burning in C.O., and keep writing. Isn't it wonderful to have the freedom to express yourself, even if we don't always agree? :+)

  2. Thank you Linda, that means a lot to me.

    I just wrote an explanation of my hiatus from cartooning and column writing- if you're interested, you can read it at