schwidderWorking to investigate, interpret, preserve, and to promote appreciation of the liturgical art of Ernst Schwidder (1931-1998) as it enhances the worship and education life of the Church.

The Ernst Schwidder Archives are housed at Valparaiso University, Valparaiso, Indiana.

wa Lynden Hope LC 1


19 thoughts on “Home

  1. Is there a listing of all of the Schwidder instalations? I would like to visit a few of them in the Pacific Northwest.

    • Mark…You are our first comment. Congratulations. Alas, we are now in the slow
      process of figuring out how to navigate WordPress. The first one was set up for us
      as a template and we’ve not become facile otherwise. Stay tuned. To answer your question, we have recorded pictures and comments from nearly 150 sites (from over 300) we have visited in over 12 states all stored in 8 or 9 3-ring binders from which we are only now beginning the process of posting. …richard…

      • Richard,

        Do you have photos of the beautiful work he did for Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church in Fort Collins, CO? If not, I would certainly be happy to send you some. There is a large standing figure of Christ as the Good Shepherd (with a quotation from John 10) incorporated into a cross-beam that looks like a combination Shepherd/Crucifix. Also a lovely pulpit and altar, both of which incorporate sheep figures.

        Bruce Bergquist,
        Visitation Pastor, SOTH

        • Bruce…
          Indeed we do have photo prints of Shepherd of the Hills LC, Fort Collins and I am Schwidder Project Committee tasked to post the pics on our website — a task which offers a steep learning curve for this luddite retiree. Either you can be patient with me
          or (upon request) I can have my committee colleague
          scan/send or email U what is in the book and/or on flashdrive in his keeping one state away. I did not take any pics at the New Belgium Brewery, but sip I did. We do always try to combine Schwidder site visits with other adventures in the arts.

        • Bruce…Pardon me. I have had Schwidder work on back burner during the summer in deference to travel. I am
          learning slowly (with help from a friend) to post the pics. I was in Fort Collins in 2012 and took pictures then and have those pics in a folder on my wife’s PC and once we get ’em moved to my lap top and I post same, Shepherd of the Hills should be more fully accounted for. fyi — Prof Ernst Schwidder (+1998) installed his liturgical carvings et al. at over 300 churches. Our project team of 3 has been able to site visit over half from Alaska to North Carolina and many points in between. The task is larger than first we anticipated and we have been at the task since 2011 when I retired from the parish ministry here in Tacoma where Ernst for many years was a leading lay member and liturgical deacon. Again, be patient and we’ll post the Shepherd of the Hills pics as a priority. richardtheretired

    • Mark…
      Colleague Joel and I are this weekend on the way for several site visits in central and eastern WA; to wit: in Yakima: Wesley UMC; Central Lutheran Church; Saint Paul Roman Catholic Cathedral. In Cheney – Emmanuel Lutheran Church. In Spokane – St. Mark’s Lutheran Church. In Walla Walla – Emmanuel Lutheran Church. And in Milton-
      Freewater, OR – Christ the King Lutheran Church. We are yet in search of a website
      posting assistance.

    • Mark…
      I am informed that the world ever shrinks and that you have come to know Mary
      Jurgensen whose father (in his youth) was member of the parish I served in Cinti.
      and we have kept contact over now many years. I am near term-limited (after 7 years) on the Board of Directors of LuthCommServicesNW and have had occasion to visit
      McMinnville in that connection. Perhaps again and, if so, meet in person. …dick…

    • Kent…
      Posted on the schwidderart.org website are the sites of 200+ Schwidder installations coast2coast. The menu directs the viewer by states. There are some pictures posted, but that is a work yet unfolding. richard tietjen

  2. Hi,

    I am the new pastor at Grace Lutheran in Grass Valley, CA and we have a large collection of Schwidder work that he did for our sanctuary. It’s all concerning the mountains of God.

  3. Thanx for your comments. My colleague Joel Nickel was @ GLC more than a year ago at which time he photographed the Schwidder art and as soon as we acquire the needed skills to upload on to our website the photos we have taken from over 150 of the more than 300 designs Schwidder executed during his long career from the late 1950’s through his death in 1998. So keep checking. We also hope to network all the congregations so that they can be in touch with each other as they wish. I will personally be in No. CA in late Sept. and if time allows will try to drop by and see you. The Rev. retired Richard H. Tietjen

  4. If you all need help posting or putting up photos on the website let me know. I’d love to be able to help you out. Feel free to e-mail me.

  5. I found your project through the PLU Alumni Newsletter. I’m proud to say the BFA degree I received from PLU back in the 80’s included several great classes with Professor Schwidder. My continued interest in art history stems from those classes.
    Thanks for acknowledging the body of work Ernst produced. Much appreciated!

  6. Greetings-

    We are purchasing a Lutheran church in Rockford, IL. This church has several pieces created by Schwidder. We’d actually like to sell those pieces and are currently looking for a buyer. Does anyone know of a buyer looking for this work? Thanks!

    • Alvin…
      Your offer was brought up at our recent Schwidder Project Committee meeting last Friday. We can make no promises, but we do try to keep the availability of Schwidder art known to our contacts. Your impressive art objects in particular will be difficult to place just because of the size. We understand that the one large orb was installed before the roof was in place. Have you established
      a price — or, are you seeking simply to offload?
      Richard Tietjen

  7. I have the original (temporary) Schwidder Christus Rex from the Valparaiso University Chapel. I attempted numerous times to contact the chapel dean to offer it as a gift for the 50th anniversary of the chapel and heard from no one. Ernie gifted this to my parents (Dr. and Mrs. Kenneth Korby) when he completed the permanent beauty. I am interested in preserving this piece and would like to see if the VU art department would be a good option? Any suggestions? Thank you! Rebecca Korby

  8. Hello. I have the original VU chapel Christus Rex (that was the temporary Schwidder created) hanging in my living room. I am looking to have it renovated. Perhaps the art department at Valpo would be interested? Thank you for your help. Rebecca Korby

    • Rebecca…
      You should have by now heard from Gregg Hertzlieb of the Brauer Museum @ Valpo. I’m not sure just
      what restoration entails. Our Schwidder Project committee will be meeting together at my University Place home (Tacoma suburb) on 14 May. We can discuss your needs at that time per your response. There is
      a planned Schwidder art show at the Brauer Museum sometime in 2017 and Gregg is interested in objects
      on loan for that show. Perhaps further arrangements can be made directly with him as well. Thanks so
      much for apprising us of the maquette. Richard Tietjen

    • The Schwidder Liturgical Art Project Committee (of which I am one of three retired LCMS clergy) is in continued contact with the Valpo Brauer Museum of Art as plans for a 2017 Schwidder Art show unfold.
      There is yet focused interest in the maquette of the Schwidder-designed Christus Rex – either on loan
      for the show, or as a permanent part of the Valpo collection. Curator Gregg Hertzlieb holds the door for
      acquisitions wide open, and our Schwidder Liturgical Art Project Committee is doing all we can to pro-
      vide material for a most engaging display. We look forward to hearing further from you, Rebecca.
      (The Rev. emeritus) Richard Tietjen

Leave a Reply to Richard Tietjen Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *