Dordt College News

Dordt art gallery features The Prodigal Son

September 8, 2010

The: “The Prodigal Son” is an oil painting created by American artist Edward Riojas in 2004. It is among 30 pieces of art now on display at the Dordt College Campus Center Art Gallery. parable of the Prodigal Son, presented in a variety of artistic styles and interpretations, is now on exhibit at the Dordt College Campus Center Art Gallery.

“The Father and His Two Sons: Images of the Prodigal Son from the Larry and Mary Gerbens Collection” can be seen daily until October 1. A gallery reception will be held Wednesday Sept. 8, from 6-8 p.m.

Each piece in the exhibition visually interprets the parable of the Prodigal Son. Themes such as greed, regret, repentance, forgiveness, jealousy, reconciliation and self-righteousness are featured in the work.

Rembrandt, Tissot, Hans Sebald-Beham, and Thomas Hart Benton are noted artists in the collection, and there are also commissioned pieces by regional artists such as Joel Tanis, Edgar Boeve, and Jon McDonald.

The collection began as a response to the book,“The Return of the Prodigal Son: A Story of Homecoming,” by Henri Nouwen. Inspired by Nouwen’s personal and introspective style, Larry and Mary Gerbens, Grand Rapids, began acquiring art with the Prodigal Son theme. They donated the work to Calvin College in 2008, and the collection is now made available for exhibitions across the United States. The show at Dordt College is the first time the collection has been made available in Iowa.

A book documenting the collection was jointly published last year by Eyekons Publishing and Calvin College. “The Father & His Two Sons” may be seen or purchased the Dordt College Bookstore or at

A CD, "Father and His Two Sons: The Art of Forgiveness," has images of the collection and is also available for purchase.

The public is invited to this free art exhibition. The Campus Center Art Gallery is open every day from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Tours are also available to church, school, and community groups by contacting David Versluis at 712.722.6374

Dordt College offers art degrees with five different emphases: fine arts studio, graphic design, art history, teaching art, or pre-architecture. The college offers more than 90 programs of study, which can be seen at

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