Anja Renkes of the Notre Dame Class of 2020 was a member of the dCEC's Sorin Fellows Program. She studied Theology and Irish Studies, as well as Art, and was a member of the Notre Dame Rowing Team. We chat about her studies, her research project in Ireland visiting and documenting the Holy Wells, and the lessons she learned through her athletic training.
- Theology, studio art, and Irish studies come together in undergraduate’s creative research project on Ireland’s holy wells — The Grotto is one of the most beloved places on campus for many students, but for junior Anja Renkes, it’s where her passions and purpose combine. “An important part of my identity that I bring here is my love of the outdoors and God's creation,” she said. The open-air, prayerful environment of the Grotto captures her desire to stay active — she enjoys hiking and backpacking and is a member of the women’s rowing team — while its significance as an outdoor Catholic shrine, set in the landscape, represents her academic interests in theology, landscape art, and Irish culture.
- Fiat Fine Art on Facebook — My artwork explores the magnificent beauty of simplicity, demonstrated in the humility of Catholic popular piety at holy wells in Ireland. Variously intimate and vast landscapes help dispose both pilgrim and passersby to look outside of themselves. Upon returning to their own conscious breath, the experience of mysterious Love communicated in the beauty of the environment and humble devotions of those who have come before helps one to experience awe and wonder at what is freely given and received by the nature of human experience in Christ. May we follow in the footsteps of the Blessed Virgin Mother’s fiat, her yes to the will of God.
- Fiat Fine Art on Instagram
- The Irish Taught Me How to Say Thank You — When I arrived at the ferry in Galway, I knew I was meeting a man who would be carrying a walking stick. That was pretty much all I knew. This fairly limited preparation characterized much of my research and travel over the course of two months in Ireland, which unfolded by the grace of God and His radical mercy and attention to detail. I had to learn how to be dependent, and receive gifts.
- Theme Song: "I Dunno" by grapes — I dunno by grapes (c) copyright 2008 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. Ft: J Lang, Morusque