Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Chinese Work of Dom Adelbert Gresnigt, OSB

Further to our look earlier today at the usus antiquior in Japan, another item of interest came our way recently from this region of the world, this time in relation to Catholic China. It is work that was published in the Bulletin of the Catholic University of Peking in the 1920's. Specifically, the work of Dom Adelbert Gresnigt, OSB (1877-1965), a Benedictine who was invited from the Abbey of Maredsous in Belgium to China in the mid 1920's. Dom Adelbert worked in such a way to blend certain Western Christian features into a Chinese context and style.

Below are a few examples of his designs -- photographed from the aforementioned Bulletin and sent in by one of our readers.

Unfortunately, very little other information is available about Dom Adelbert (also spelled 'Adalbert' in other sources), at least that I am yet able to find. If any of our readers has any further information they would like to share, or further references, please do send it in.

An altar designed by Dom Adelbert Gresnigt in a Chinese style

A design requested of Dom Adelbert Gresnigt which looked to convert a neo-gothic church into one of a Chinese style

An episcopal throne designed by Dom Adelbert Gresnigt for the Chinese bishop Melchior Sun, Vicar Apostolic of Li Hsien

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If you find this topic interesting, you may also want to review some previous postings on this sort of thing:

Historical Examples of Inculturation in Catholic China (May 2010)

Liturgical Arts Quarterly 1935: "Christian Art in the Far East" (April 2010)

Japanese Madonnas (April 2010)

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