The Saint John's Bible is made for 21st century readers and is called the "America's Book of Kells". It is a collaboration project between Saint John's Abbey, University in Collegeville, Minnesota and Donald Jackson's Scriptorium in Monmouth, Wales. Donald Jackson, the Artistic Director of the project is a renowned Western calligrapher and illuminator.
The original Bible when opened is 3 ft. wide and 2 ft tall, it includes 1150 velum pages divided in 7 different volumes. The first words were written on velum in early 2000 and the last volume was completed just a few weeks ago (the final presentation of the last volume was last week in Minnesota). Ancient techniques and tools were applied through the whole process, using old inks, gold and platinum for guilding and turkey, goose or swan quills for the application.
The illuminations are combinations of old and modern techniques, on several pages the local flora and fauna of Minnesota and Wales are shown, e.g., the life cycle of the Monarch butterfly to symbolize life, death and resurrection.
You can page through the Bible by clicking here (to go to the next page click in the upper right corner of the right hand page).
(Monarch Butterfly and milkweed on the left)
At the moment 25 of the illuminations (giclee prints) can be viewed in St. Andrew United Methodist Church, Denver, CO until June 28, 2011 (8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.).
(Newsweek published an article about the project in 2000, you can read it by clicking here)