Photo Exhibit Puts Focus on Religious Similarities

December 15, 2006

Author: Tim Funk

Source: Charlotte Observer

At a time when religion has become a code word for confrontation, even violence, around the world, Charlotteans will be asked over the next five months to focus more on the similarities among Jews, Christians and Muslims -- all of whom claim Abraham as a spiritual ancestor.

Starting today, the Levine Museum of the New South will spotlight 11 area families in an ambitious photo exhibit -- "Families of Abraham" -- that follows them over a year as they celebrate holy days and go about rituals of daily life.

Eight local photographers clicked away at the families' homes and houses of worship, shooting everything from an Indian American wedding to a Passover Seder to a Christmas Mass at Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe (Our Lady of Guadalupe).

The museum walls will also be filled with information, prayers and Scripture from the monotheistic faiths, all of which have thousands of practitioners in a Charlotte that has grown increasingly diverse in recent years.

"But I hope (the exhibit experience) will be a feeling thing," says Eleanor Brawley, a Charlotte photographer and TV documentary producer who conceived and directed the project. "We want people to make connections as people ... These are their neighbors."