New Artwork in the Cathedral Lady Chapel

Following on from his highly successful one-man exhibition last November in the Edmund Chapel, Andrew Vessey will return to the Cathedral with a new artwork which will be hung at the entrance to the Lady Chapel.


Our Lady Chapel, with its focus on Mary, the mother of Jesus, is used by many people as a quiet space for personal prayer. This area of the chapel is now a space where contemporary art is temporarily displayed, offering visitors an artistic vision which probes and stretches our understanding of the person of Mary, and can help people in prayer and contemplation.

The Revd Canon Philip Banks, Precentor at St Edmundsbury Cathedral says, “We’re inviting artists to submit work which will remain in place for several months that focuses on Mary and seeks to help people see her role beyond traditional Madonna paintings or statues.”


Canon Andrew Vessey, who once taught and lectured in Art and who now paints and writes poetry in his spare time, is opening this intended sequence with a work entitled “Mary’s Pinboard”. It will be accompanied, as was each picture in his recent Exhibition, with a Reflection, a Poem and a Prayer.


Andrew explains that, “The concept is for us to peer into Mary’s private world with her own collection of reminders, pictures, notes and mementos and so to connect with our own pinboards or corners of our domestic routines. Andrew’s painting suggests that Mary was no different and while the artwork relied on the artist’s imagination to have filled in the gaps, sometimes with tongue in cheek and little bits of humour, the overall ambition is to bring Mary to life, stress her very ordinariness as a busy mother, struggling for some privacy in the midst of a working household.”


The artwork will be installed on Friday 2 June and Andrew will be present from 11.30 am on Sunday 4 June to discuss his work with visitors. Moving forward, the artwork can be viewed during the Cathedral’s opening hours and will be placed at the entrance to the Lady Chapel.


Artists wishing to submit work for consideration for the project in 2024 and beyond should contact The Revd Canon Philip Banks with examples of their portfolio: