Prayer, lectio divina and work, according to St Benedict, are the three most important elements of a monk's life. A novice does two hours work in the community each day, a professed sister three. Work or employments vary and are rotated every three months. Shown here are the Vestarian, who make and repairs the habits, and cowls, the Laundry Sister, the Pantry Sister and the Guest Mistress or Portress who looks after visitors and retreatants. There are a few rooms in the outer enclosure for guests or for people who wish to make retreats.

Anne Noble, Artist;  Photographer; 

This is one of the photographs in our collection. It was made in Tyburn, London, England, Great Britain in 1988.
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About the Work
From the Series "In the presence of Angels- Photographs of Contemporary life" 56 photographs."Two primary raw materials of photography, time and light, also happen to be two concepts central to the monastic life. Anne Noble's exhibition, In the presence of angels, which has been touring New Zealand for the last two years, captures the reality inhabited by the Benedictine nuns of Tyburn Convent, near the centre of London, and also illuminates the photo-artist's own practice. Nobles exposures reflect the nun's preoccupation with transcending the materiality and temporality of existence. In a catalogue essay to the show, Mother M. Xavier McMonagle describes her monastic vocation as a "spiritual dance between time and eternity"*. Photography is, in its own way, also a dance or transaction between time and timelessness. Its objective, like the liturgical life, can be "to sanctify time and all human activity"**" by Gregory O'Brien. Article ' Silent Films', in 'Illusions'. pg 36. See Loan file.
*In the presence of Angels, Exhibition catalogue, Sarjeant Gallery, Whanganui, 1989, pp7-10.
This record represents a work in a series and has related works.
Image 103 x 152mm
Frame 482 x 585 mm
silver toned gelatin photograph on paper
From the series of 56 photographs "In the presence of Angels- Photographs of Contemporary life". A nun is working in the pantry amongst the trays of fruit.
Credit Line
On long term loan to the Sarjeant Gallery Te Whare o Rehua Whanganui
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