Finding faith amid the chaos of Christmas

All too often, the true meaning of Christmas gets buried in twinkling lights, tinsel, pine needles, gift tags, eggnog and sleigh bells.


Photographer Michael Slade wanted to find out just how deep it can be buried, so he began a project to uncover the true spirit of the season. For the past three years, Slade has embarked on “a daily quest to find Jesus amongst the world’s celebration of Christmas.” He drives around each day during December, sometimes for hours, until he finds a finds a crèche to photograph and catalogue for his project (crèche is a French term for “crib,” and it refers to the Christian nativity).


His imagery is concerned less with digging the religion out of commercialism and more with documenting the entire avalanche. The crèches are often entwined with inflatable snowmen, plastic reindeer, garden hoses and ADT security signs, creating a thought-provoking juxtaposition of the secular and the sublime.


His work is at once cynical and sympathetic toward the position of faith in modern society.


Follow his blog this December at

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