with Sacred Artist Dino Carbetta
Spiritual Director: Fr. Kevin Peek
April 29 - May 11, 2019
Group & Spiritual Leaders:
About Dino Carbetta:
Dino is an accomplished professional photographer with over 30 years of experience who specializes in Italian Fine/Sacred Art photography. Primary focus is on the harmony of colors and aesthetic beauty, inspiring architecture, and the deep faith-based historical culture of Italy.
Dino is a graduate of the world renowned College of Photography, Brooks Institute of Santa Barbara, California. He possesses an astute knowledge of all aspects and mediums of the photographic industry. He also holds a BS degree from the University of Tennessee, has taught university level photography classes, and looks forward to the establishment of future workshops, tours, and pilgrimages.
"Italy has become my muse. As an Italian Catholic photographer, I have found my true passion and love in the mountains, rolling hills, and seaside of Italy. My Italian heritage is personified in the landscape of Italy and down every via or strada...Italy is my heaven on earth. I find amore with every warm Italian smile and the enthusiasm of its people. Inside every Church, Basilica, and Duomo I revive my devotion and faith. Hiking the Cinque Terra, Italian Alps, the mystical streets of Assisi, or drifting along the canals of Venice, one can only reach an exalted state. Finally, sailing the beautiful azzurro Mediterranean seas, or walking along the rocky shores of Positano, Sorrento, and Amalfi - I know God truly created this magnificent land." Dino Carbetta
About Fr. Kevin Peek:
Fr. Kevin Peek grew up the middle child of eleven just outside of Atlanta, Georgia. After receiving a history
degree at Christendom College in 1992, he was ordained from Mount Saint Mary's Seminary in 1998. He has served
as a priest of the Archdiocese of Atlanta since then, and has been shared with the Archdiocese of Military Services
(US Army) since 2008. He has traveled in both capacities on many occasions, both personally and leading groups
both large and small-on pilgrimages, mission trips, and military operations. Italy has long been his absolute
favorite place to travel, as he experiences the climate, food, and culture all coming together in a wonderful
integration of humanity, life, and love in the mystery of God's plan. "For the glory of God is a living man;
and the life of man consist in beholding God" (St. Irenaeus)-and Italy provides such an opportunity to all who seek it.
"Looking forward to sharing the beauty of sacred art and culture with all who can come with us!" -Fr. Kevin
Recent News Article:
The Fine Art Of Dino Carbetta. Bringing Religious Art Into Today's Reality
If there is any Heaven-like beauty in this world, aside from human life and nature, it is found in the timeless sacred art within many older traditional Catholic Churches everywhere. Starting from the tabernacles and monstrances holding the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and then going to the frescos, statues, and crucifixes, all remind us of the eternal destination we must strive to attain.
While most of us within the Church can and do appreciate traditional sacred art, most religious art from the last fifty years or so tends to be modern and with subject matter that is much less reverent. Many of today's newer Catholic parishes incorporate a bland and neutral combination of open spaces with sparse statuary and art.
Statues of Mary and Joseph are often one color, that either being plain white, or a dreaded beige. They evoke little more in us than what we already bring to these places, which is our faith itself. We do know that Jesus is present in the tabernacle, regardless of how uninspiring the modernist art and architecture may be.
Enter Dino Carbetta. Dino is a humble man whom I recently had the pleasure to meet. I sought him out after seeing much of his art and photography on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram.
While what I've shared thus far with you sings the praises of traditional sacred art from the past, the very talented Dino Carbetta has taken much of this beauty out of the past and into today's reality.
The Atlanta-based artist has been a commercial photographer since the late 1980s. He attended the University of Tennessee and pursued his love of photography there, but he took it to the next level to hone and fine tune his craft by attending the Brooks Institute in California. Brooks is considered one of the nation's most respected schools of art and photography.
Dino's roots are in Italy, as if his name didn't already give that away. He is a man who values the Old World traditions of his Italian heritage and, in 2012, he made a trip to Italy to visit his grandparents. A cradle Catholic, Carbetta also has a great devotion to our faith.
As visiting his grandparents was the main purpose of his trip, he wasn't sure what else he was going to do during his stay in Italy. It was right then and there that Carbetta's talents begin to take form in the love of his Catholic faith, and in his profession of photography.
Carbetta told me that he decided to go visit some of the local Churches to both pray and maybe to take some pictures. While some of the Churches he visited appeared like ordinary and unassuming edifices from their exterior, the interior was a whole different story.
"Some of the Churches I visited looked plain on the outside, but once inside, I was blown away."
This experience is what led Carbetta to evangelize by taking some of his photographs and reworking some of the images with different mediums to create a whole new work of art. He will take a photograph of a saint's statue or a landscape image of a small Italian seaside village and transform it through color enhancements and other graphic wizardry.
I could go on and on about Carbetta's work and how big a fan of his I am, but the art must be seen to be appreciated.
I have dabbled in graphic arts since my first-grade teacher, a very beautiful and kind nun, encouraged me and doted on my artistic abilities as a child. I have always been a very visual person and a huge fan of both sacred and traditional classic art, but I also love modern pop culture art. But when I laid eyes on Carbetta's work, I knew he was on to something much greater than any other artist I had ever looked up to before.
Carbetta does not modernize the old, but he does give it new life in a grander way. His devotion to God and His angels and saints is unmistakable. It comes through in the same way as does the devotion of the great masters Michelangelo, Raphael, and Da Vinci.
Dino Carbetta has been blessed with a very special gift. His work is inspiring to me, to say the very least, but, most important, it reminds me of the absolute, awesome, and timeless beauty of God and of His creations. Carbetta's work is a visual and spiritual symphony which brings great comfort and joy to my heart and to my soul.
My hope is that by my introducing you to this very talented but humble man, you will seek his work out at DinoCarbetta.com, and share it with all of your Catholic family and friends. His prints would make beautiful Christmas gifts for the upcoming holidays. You can get a taste of his work by following him on Instagram at @DinoCarbetta.
One of Carbetta's prints raised $5,000 during a silent auction to benefit a pro-life program in Atlanta during its recent fundraising gala. Perhaps you can have Mr. Carbetta at your next event too.
Carbetta is also hosting an Italian pilgrimage in spring of 2019. For more information on this, visit www.pilgrimages.com/dino/.
Let's offer many prayers for Mr. Carbetta to continue his craft with God's protection, and that it be God's will that He inspire future generations of Catholic artists for many years to come.
Sacred Art has a Messenger: Dino Carbetta
By: Marya Jauregui - June 19, 2017
Dino Carbetta is Italian, but you would never guess it from talking on the phone with him. His
Italian grandparents settled in Ohio but he has an accent from living in Atlanta most of his life,
and schooling in Tennessee. Interesting fact; back in the '60s while he was growing up in the
Atlanta Diocese, there were only 30,000 Catholics. He had to travel outside of Atlanta to go to a
monastery for Mass. Today there are 1.1 million Catholics in the Atlanta Diocese! You might
already be one of his 5000+ fans on Facebook, but if not, sign up quick. I count myself as blessed to
have the pleasure of frequently seeing his amazing work cross my feed over the last two years.
Dino has been a commercial photographer for 30 years, and trained at one of the top photography
schools in the world, Brooks Institute in Santa Barbara, CA.
I asked to interview him because his art is the kind that grabs and holds my attention. His art is something that I could look at every day on my walls and never get bored. "Ominous skies over the Papal Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi" is probably my favorite photo of all. The location is Italy, and the colors are saturated to a point where it seems magical, mystical, and fantastical. From those who have described their account of heaven, they have described a similar saturation of color and brilliance. Like most artists, he is a perfectionist at his work. He is what I would call a photographer artist, taking his raw image, and bringing out the most important details, by sharpening, deepening, and cleaning. He zeros in on what he feels is most important and magnifies its beauty. He spends 65 to 70 hours a week perfecting only the best of his images. His style takes the beauty of the raw image, and artistically adds even more drama with light and color. He told me that he could never reproduce a particular image, because each one can take up to 500 steps to reach the point of the image you are seeing today.
Obviously Italy captured his heart and he hopes to retire there one day. Dino has photographed some of the places that were most captivating to me, namely Assisi, Sienna, and the Amalfi coast including Positano. I asked him what his three most favorite Churches were. "Basilica of Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari in Venice, which is somewhat plain or ugly on the outside, but inside is vast. Artwork served to teach the illiterate people of the times, and served as a glimpse of heaven. In the Sienna Cathedral every crevice has artwork and is hard to capture on film. The Church was built over hundreds of years. The main Church in Sorrento is the Duomo, also known as the Cathedral of San Filippo and San Giacomo, which is concealed right in the heart of the town. The photographs of the crucifix are from that Church."
Dino and I talked about the fact that in days of ancient Churches built in Italy, that the illiterate people relied on the artwork and the stained glass to remind them of the stories of the Bible and their Catholic heritage. The Churches were often plain on the outside and wonderfully adorned inside to give the people a glimpse and taste of heaven. I see Dino as someone who shares that glimpse of heaven through his artwork, especially the sacred places. Not everyone can travel to these beautiful locations, so Dino brings it to your home.
When Dino went to Italy for the first time 5 years ago, he bought the best Canon camera money would buy and arrived very well versed in Rick Steves' sightseeing highlights. Although Dino stuck to his planned itinerary, he was snapping photos right and left like a kid in a candy shop. He felt he was finally home. As luck would have it, right outside the Basilica of Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, he thought he saw Rick Steves and called out to him. Sure enough, Rick was filming new segments. As Dino traveled around the country, he found that 80-85% of his images were religious and Catholic in nature.
When he got back to the States and started working through all his images, he refined his new style. He built a website a couple of years later and started displaying those images for sale, increasing the gallery bit by bit. Luckily he also started a page on Facebook displaying those images as well. Dino frequently hears that his images have brought people closer to God and are uplifting. Those images have brought people peace. Some have approached him to do coffee table books, or art for Catholic stores. There is even an offer to do a Catholic photography pilgrimage to Italy. Dino is waiting for just the right opportunity.
In traveling through all the sacred Churches of Italy, Dino always had the reverence that is often forgotten by those touring the Churches of Europe. When he would go into those sacred spaces he knew he was home. I encourage you to browse through the gallery of sacred images as this article is not long enough for me to include the photographs I love. It is honestly hard to choose. And when you do make a choice, you will bring your own " Glimpse of Heaven" into your home or office. His photographs will transport you, your family, clients, or patients to a more serene and contemplative place. His photographs are available loose on rag paper, or on wrapped canvas from $140- $1500 depending on size. Although I am a lover of sacred art, I would also want to take home the landscape photos of the Amalfi coast and Canals of Venice.
Dino tells a funny story about his excursions to Cinque Terre and the "popeye" boat he chartered to take shots from the sea of the coastline.
"This image was created standing on the rooftop of the antique 28 foot Angelina's galley with my arms around the mast and my 25 pound camera bag strapped over my shoulder, creating a human tripod for support. I could not help noticing tourists in each village photographing our boat as we sailed up and down the coast; perhaps it was the image of a silly photographer hanging on for dear life as the waves wobbled the boat side to side in anticipation of a splash down?!" - Dino
What artists go through to get the perfect shot, right?