I recently became aware of the beautiful works of art by Catholic sculptor Timothy P. Schmalz. He believes each piece he creates is a prayer and has the power to convert the fallen away, according to his website.
His sculptures, many of them done in one shade of white, are a little different than the traditional statues and images we typically see in churches.
They are a little more modern, but still beautiful. Some of them are life-size and are on display at various shrines throughout the world. His smaller designs grace many homes and gardens.
At the shrine of Our Lady of Knock in Ireland, for instance, he has created bronze statues of St. Patrick standing on a snake, or serpent, which represents the devil. There is also a life-size statue of St. Kevin, a man known for his long hours of contemplative prayer.
He has also created a ‘Fire Fighter Collection. The most famous piece in this series is his 13-foot statue in Kitchener, Ontario. It shows two angels in prayer kneeling. Their upturned wings cradle a number of fallen firefighters.
Many of his works are available online, in a smaller scale, for people who’d like their own version.
Schmalz’s promotional material describes him as a ‘Christian sculptor,’ and some of his works are taken from Biblical scenes, such as the Samaritan ‘Woman at the Well.’ Others are distinctly Catholic. There are sculptures of St. Joseph the Good Provider, recently canonized saint Kateri Tekakwitha and St. Therese the Little Flower.
Also, there is a work called ‘One Body.’ This shows the Risen Christ, as well as the Catholic belief in the Communion of Saints, which includes all the people who’ve died and have gone to Heaven.
Another piece titled, ‘Upon this Rock’ shows St. Peter, the first Pope of the Catholic Church, holding a set of keys. These would be the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven.
Schmalz has also carved several different depictions of Christ suffering upon the Cross.