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Holy Cards  by BARBARA CALAMARI

Published by Abrams, (2004)

From the birth of Christianity, saints have inspired the classic works of Western art. They are human representatives of divine grace, and their stories of faith and suffering, and trial and transcendence, have fascinated the secular and comforted, consoled, and encouraged believers. One of the most important and endearing traditions of Catholic iconography is that of the holy card. Offering images of the saints, these portable objects of daily ritual are carried for protection; given as remembrances at communions, confirmations, and funerals; and collected and traded.
With Holy Cards, authors Barbara Calamari and Sandra DiPasqua offer the first book to survey this rich and varied art form. Featuring a pantheon of major religious figures in Catholicism and many little-known saints–such as St. Clare, the patron saint of television, and St. Monica, the patron saint of people with disappointing children–this book is sure to inform and inspire.
The beautifully reproduced holy cards are arranged thematically, and each is accompanied by a brief biography of the subject, including attributes and powers. A glowing compendium of jewel-like images, Holy Cards can be treasured for both its spiritual and its artistic qualities. It is the perfect gift for those interested in Catholicism and devotional art.

BARBARA CALAMARI is a freelance writer who has worked in both film and television.

SANDRA DIPASQUA is a graphic designer and art director.