Some of PJ’s Work (Dennis Aubrey)


We recently needed to select among our images for a set of fifteen that we considered the best that we have created. This was a daunting task; we had to choose from about 150,000 images to get it to .01%. Eleven of the fifteen eventually chosen were PJ’s and today I want to share a grouping of four of those that we have not shown in any previous posts.

These images are a tribute to her artistic sensibility and her ability to look deeply into these churches that we love so much. The first is a stunning and moody study of the ambulatory of the Collégiale Saint-Cerneuf in the Auvergne. The shapes, textures and colors combine to project the mystery of age and eternity in stone.

Ambulatory, Collégiale Saint-Cerneuf, Billom  (Puy-de-Dôme)  Photo by PJ McKey

Ambulatory, Collégiale Saint-Cerneuf, Billom (Puy-de-Dôme) Photo by PJ McKey

The next shot captures the essence of the Gothic Cathédrale Saint-Etienne in Bourges. In the view of the ambulatory we feel the incredible vertical thrust of architecture as the side aisle and nave recede into the far distance. I have seen many photographs of Gothic cathedrals but have never this particular expression of the architecture.

Ambulatory, Cathédrale Saint-Etienne, Bourges  (Indre)  Photo by PJ McKey

Ambulatory, Cathédrale Saint-Etienne, Bourges (Indre) Photo by PJ McKey

Contrasting with the majesty and grandeur of the Gothic cathedral is the photograph of the humble chapel in the Ardèche village of Chassiers. In a space absolutely devoid of adornment, we feel a deep spirituality and belief that mark what is best in any religion.

Chapel, Chapelle Saint Benoit, Chassiers  (Ardèche)  Photo by PJ McKey

Chapel, Chapelle Saint Benoit, Chassiers (Ardèche) Photo by PJ McKey

Finally, one of my very favorites, the simple view into the Église Saint Pierre in Saint Gilles near Reims. We see past the old wooden door with its metal fittings into the spare interior and a distant Madonna. This typifies PJ’s artistry – I could photograph that simple church for days and would never see this in my photographic mind’s eye.

South portal, Église Saint Pierre, Saint Gilles (Marne)  Photo by PJ McKey

South portal, Église Saint Pierre, Saint Gilles (Marne) Photo by PJ McKey

Sometimes I am just compelled to point out how marvelous PJ’s work is, and ensure that these shots, that would otherwise never find a way onto the pages of Via Lucis, see the light of day.

20 responses to “Some of PJ’s Work (Dennis Aubrey)

  1. These are absolutely wonderful but, given the overall quality of your and PJ’s images, it must have been devilishly difficult to choose these….!

    • Barbara, so nice to hear from you. It was an interesting process for selection. We had an objective to show the spiritual side of the churches, so we cut out the shots of sculpture, painting, exteriors, and purely architectural shots. That eliminated a great number of candidates. It was a very educational exercise for us.

  2. I hope I’ll remember these on my next visit to an ancient church. You are absolutely right about the artistry of these images. Thank you for sharing them and admiration of PJ’s talent.

  3. I particularly love the last one, the two colours, and the beauty of the open door. The photos remind me that no one else does beauty like the French. Vive la France!

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