Even though I was not raised in a Catholic home, I’ve always been drawn to the idea of saints. Recently I visited the Blanton Museum to take a peek at the 700-year-old Crusader Bible (on loan from the Morgan Library & Museum in New York). I was mesmerized by the way these ancient, colorful illustrations were used to bring the stories to life. I ended up exploring much of the permanent collection at the Blanton, and fell in love with a few works in the French and Italian rooms. So many of the great painters and artists of the old world were focused on holy subjects, and their depictions of beloved saints are some of the most beautiful and touching. I’ve been studying and learning a little bit more about saints, and indulging in some great art history along the way. For Christmas, my mom gave me a tiny hand-painted plaque featuring San Francisco de Asis (the Patron Saint of small, animals, children, and kindness). He is definitely one of my favorites, as is St. Cecilia (beautiful details featured above in the painting by John William Waterhouse), the Patron Saint of music and poetry. Do you have a favorite saint you appeal to in times of need?

image sources: virgin mary from the ghent alterpiece by jan van eck, vintage girl on moon via pinterest, details from “st. cecilia” by john william waterhouse, collection of french brass flaming hearts from moonscuriousobjects on etsy, tapestry coat by free people, strasbourg: capitale de noel by christopher dunstan burgh, flowers via pinterest, elena kougianou lace cuffs, candlelit church in paris by ingo schommer, marais house via designtripper

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