Discovering the Truth About Santa Claus—2002
St. Nicholas Center Exhibit
Holland Area Arts Council
150 East 8th Street, Holland, MI
December 6, 2002–January 4, 2003
Hundreds of images of St. Nicholas were featured in the main gallery of the Holland Area Arts Council in Holland, Michigan. St. Nicholas is shown in traditional iconography, as a European gift-giver, and in the unique image from Bari, Italy.
The exhibit consisted of one-of-a-kind items made by artists and artisans along with many graphic portrayals in engravings, woodcuts, lithographs, paintings, prints, and posters.
St. Nicholas first intrigued me when our children were small. I wanted them to know Santa was a real person who had served God and helped others. I hoped understanding the real Santa would help them connect faith and giving . . . and, just maybe, moderate seasonal greed.
We added Dutch touches to St. Nicholas Day. On December 5th, our three children put out wooden shoes, with carrots. The next morning would find a bag of gold chocolate coins with two matchbox cars for the boys; for Laura, the coins with jewelry or special barrettes. These simple things brightened an Advent day and gave opportunity to talk about St. Nicholas.
I wanted a nice figurine of the good bishop for St. Nicholas Day. Finally, a corn husk St. Nicholas turned up. He was okay, but not quite right. My search continued and in time many wonderful bishops St. Nicholas were found. Had that first one been just right, he might have been the last!
—Carol Myers 2002