Photography exhibit depicts life of Christ

Connie Kelly looks at the depiction of Christ’s angels at the “Reflections of Christ” photography exhibit on display this week at St. Mary’s Hospital.

The “Reflections of Christ” photography display opened Wednesday afternoon at the new Saccommano Center at St. Mary’s Hospital.

The 30 photographs depict scenes from the Bible including his birth in the manger, the crucifixion and the his ascension into Heaven, set to original music.

The traveling display is the work of photographer Mark Mabry who had a vision to recreate Biblical depictions using the new medium of digital photography. It has been seen in 20 U.S. cities and in Canada.

“Everyone has used all kinds of art forms but never in the photographic art. There’s a brilliance in bringing this kind of art onto the subject,” said Connie Kelly, a coordinator in bringing the display to Grand Junction.

Kelly found Mabry’s story compelling. He left a lucrative career in the fashion business to become a portrait photographer.  “He asked himself, ‘where will my life do the most good,’” Kelly said.

A 20 minute video accompanies the display giving a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the pictures.

Mabry used a variety of different techniques to capture just the right image and facial expressions on his models.

The angels were instructed to jump on trampolines to capture their flowing gowns in mid-flight. The model who plays Jesus stood on cinder blocks in the ocean so that it appeared he was walking on water. It rained during the shooting of the crucifixion, making the models miserable, which is exactly how they should have looked.

Throughout the shooting, Mabry reminded the models of the life of Jesus and other characters in the Bible. “ I wanted to stress the great burden that Josef must have felt when he saw Mary and the baby lying in the manger,” he explained.

Some models said they could feel the spirit of Jesus shining down on the project which was primarily filmed in Arizona. 

“I know that he is aware of us and I know that what we are doing here is going to change lives if we let it,” Mabry said of his work.

Kelly feels the photographs are powerful enough to connect people with their spiritual side. “It offers some quiet moments in such a noisy world,” she said of the display.

“It’s not about a certain religion or church, it’s just as much about art and everyone connects in a different way,” Kelly said.

The exhibit is free and open to the public from 3 to 7:30 p.m. at St. Mary’s through Feb. 21. It will move and reopen Feb. 22 at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 2542 G Road, through Feb. 27.

The public can meet Mark Mabry at 7 p.m. Feb. 21. A variety of concerts are scheduled nightly. The closing concert will take place at 7 p.m. Feb. 28. More information is available at



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