(all photographs by Michael Myers)

In the Fall of 2000, Pastor Iva Bowers, a native of Panama who came to the US in 1979, had just appeared on the Queen Latifah show as a Tina Turner impersonator when she found out she had breast cancer. As she recovered from her illness, she received a vision from God that she needed to tell the story of the Bible in fish tanks. And so began the Healing Gallery Ministry, an array of fish tanks on the back porch of Pastor Bowers’ home on the Southeast side of Colorado Springs that depict scenes from both Old and New Testaments.

Bowers uses figurines, action figures, dried plants, plastic plants, rocks, paint, fabric and anything else she can find to created the scenes. The result is at once diorama, folk art, outsider art and inspired vision.

In this slide show, Bowers quickly narrates the story of the Bible as her fish tanks tell it.


5 Responses to The Fish Tank Bible

  1. Nancy Gregory says:

    Incredibly unusual but Iva really tells the Bible in an incredibly beautiful way.
    PS I love Tina Turner too!

  2. John Sondericker says:

    This is one of those BS’s that just gets better and better each time I see it.

  3. adam degraff says:

    Something about them being underwater and the lighting gives an extra dreamlike aura to these scenarios, striking an interior minor chord that I found moving and beautiful. And something about the different types of reconfigured figurines works too, a la Henry Darger.

  4. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by bettinaswig, KRCC. KRCC said: The Fish Tank Bible: In the Fall of 2000, Pastor Iva Bowers, a native of Panama who came to the US in 1979, ha… http://bit.ly/gTpFaq […]

  5. Mary Heimerman says:

    Are they all underwater? I think I saw a fish in one, but some seemed dry, and with electric lights in the scenes.


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