Centenary alumna collaborates on new interdisciplinary project
SHREVEPORT, LA — Sarah Duet, an artist and writer and a 2011 Centenary graduate, has collaborated with local pastor and author Matt Rawle on an innovative interdisciplinary project. Duet created a series of six paintings, titled REFRACTIONS, in response to Rawle’s newest book, Jesus Revealed: The I Am Statements in the Gospel of John. Duet and Rawle will host a book launch, including discussion and Q&A about the project, on Saturday, August 27, from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m. at RAW the studio, 3829 Gilbert Drive in Shreveport.
The event is free and open to the public, and includes a book signing and exhibition of the REFRACTIONS painting series. Books, paintings, and prints will be available for purchase.
Rawle is Lead Pastor at Asbury United Methodist Church in Bossier City and an international speaker who explores, among other topics, the intersection of pop culture and the church. His books include The Faith of a Mockingbird, Hollywood Jesus, The Salvation of Doctor Who, The Redemption of Scrooge, and The Gift of the Nutcracker.
Jesus Revealed explores the “I Am” statements in the Gospel of John, examining the way that the concepts of light, bread, way, and life function as works of art and as symbols that illuminate the “deep mystery of Jesus Christ.” To further highlight the artistic roots of this symbolism in John’s Gospel, Rawle asked Duet to interpret the “I Am” statements as a creator.
Early in their collaborative process, Rawle shared a quote from Craig Koester that proved foundational: “The characters in John’s Gospel are a prism that breaks up the pure light of Jesus’ remote epiphany into colors the reader can see.” Duet’s REFRACTIONS, painted in a geometric abstraction technique that she often uses in her work, was inspired by this image of a prism reflecting light to reveal multifaceted realities.
"It was liberating to pursue this expression outside the limits of language, without the words that so often carry a weight of certainty that they were never meant to hold,” said Duet. “I hope these paintings are accessible to everyone—whether you simply feel drawn to them visually or you are more interested in the texts that inspired them. Ultimately, I returned to Lewis Hyde’s assertion that, ‘Every mystery needs its image’ as a mantra while making this work. These are the images I could offer at this time in response to the mysteries at hand.”
Duet’s work often combines visual and literary elements, inviting the reader or viewer into quiet reflection and personal discovery through layers of meaning, texture, and minimal palettes. Her first book of blackout poetry, WHAT HAPPENED IS HAPPENING, is available now at sarahduet.com.