Tuesday, May 1, 8 p.m.

Spiritual devotion has inspired some of the most spectacular works of art the world has ever seen, raising challenging questions about the relationship between humans, the divine and the act of creating. In the context of religion, art has held many purposes. It has been used to express a spiritual longing all throughout the world and all throughout time.

Civilizations have created art to render visual depictions of a higher being, to reveal a revelation about a divine spirit within them, to challenge the primacy of a god over creation and as a celebration or manifestation of a higher calling. In this episode of Civilizations, explore the intricate relationship between religion and art — two key features that define civilization — and the conflicts and risks that have emerged from the relationship between the two. Civilizations: God and Art will air on Tuesday, May 8 at 8 p.m. on PBS.


Watch a preview: