Ladislav Záborský: Imprisoned for His Catholic Art

“The substance of my work is the experience of God transferred into my heart (…) Art that seeks truth and beauty is the anticipation of eternity.”

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foto1Living Catholic artist, Ladislav Záborský was sentenced in Slovakia for treason to seven years imprisonment in 1954 but was released on Christmas Eve 1957. His crime? He painted Christ as a worker in 1949.  His other religious art was labelled corrupt.ladislav_zaborsky_10148a_modlitba_dusa_ponorena_do_svetlaobraz_zab-svetlo_z_hora-250x250While imprisoned, Ladislav felt as if his hands were nailed to the cross because he could not paint but only seek God in the depths of his soul.  He felt as if he was crucified because he could not walk where he wanted to. In poems written after his release, Ladislav expressed the deep spiritual transformation which occurred during his imprisonment. The result of his inner crucifixion meant he no longer fulfilled his own desires but only saught God and His desires.

1395_zaborsky_najvacsi_milosrdny_samaritan_1976_olej_240x300The following poems are found in The Walls Behind the Curtain: East European Prison Literature, 1945-1990. edited by Harold B. Segel, University of Pittsburgh Press, 2012

Thus I…

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