Spreading fear and mayhem in the visual arts.

Dr. Paul Koudounaris' "Empire of Death" at La Luz de Jesus, Los Angeles

by Suzanne on September 18th, 2011


St. Pancratius, Wil, Switzerland by Dr. Paul Koudounaris - click to enlarge

Back in June this year, I suggested Paul Koudounaris' ForteanTimes article Bones with Bling - The amazing jewelled skeletons of Europe for reading and those of you who followed my order friendly invitation will be very familiar with the topic discussed here, indeed with most of the image material as well.

If we go even further back, to June 2009, some very eager WurzelForum® members might remember an article entitled Sisterhood of the Skulls about the Neapolitan caves where a cult of old women "adopt" human skulls which was also written by the great Mr Koudounaris.


The remains of St Maximus, Basilica of Waldsassen by Dr. Paul Koudounaris - click to enlarge

For the past few years, Paul Koudounaris has been traveling to churches, crypta and catacombs around the world to compile a comprehensive study of vanitas rites and memento mori decorations of our collective religiously morbid past.

In October, his efforts will be published by Thames & Hudson in a beautiful tome containing 250 full-color and 50 black-and-white photographs entitled Emipre of Death - A Cultural History of Ossuaries and Charnel Houses and this coming Saturday, Sep 24, Hollywood's La Luz de Jesus gallery is holding an opening reception and book signing with the artist. A bit far away from the majority of subjects of his studies, but OH WELL, we Europeans can't have everything - after all, we got most of the actual relics, so we still totally win all the way. Details below.

If you're on the East Coast and near New York, you might want to wait until October 13, when Paul will be giving a lecture at The Observatory Room and sign his monograph in an event organised by the great Joanna of Morbid Anatomy.


Holy Martyr Theodosius, Waldsassen by Dr. Paul Koudounaris - click to enlarge

Opening reception: Sep 24, 7 - 10 PM - includes book signing

On show: Sep 24 - Oct 3, 2011

Address: La Luz de Jesus Gallery, 4633 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90027, USA, tel: 323-666-7667, email: info@laluzdejesus.com

Opening hours: Mon - Wed: 11 AM - 7 PM, Thu - Sat: 11 AM - 9 PM, Sun: 12 - 6 PM

Preview & press release

Artist's website

WurzelForum discussion