ArtWay

The artist is not a special kind of person. Every person is a special kind of artist. Eric Gill

ArtWay newsletter 2022

 

By way of this newsletter I want to fill you in about a year that was a year of transition for ArtWay. We have looked for new ways to continue ArtWay, as I saw myself compelled to reduce my activities due to quickly fatigued eyes and decreased energy because of it. Unexpected doors have opened, while others were closed. I will tell you more further on, but first let us focus our attention – in the spirit of ArtWay – on the work depicted above.

At first glance this may look like a Christmas landscape, but is it? I recently saw this work by the German artist Caspar David Friedrich used as Advent work and after some reflection I could well agree with that choice. For many years Friedrich has been one of my favorite artists. I love his fine manner of painting and his rich use of symbolism. Art history sees him as the romantic artist par excellence, but I see him most of all as a God-fearing artist who translated his view of life to the canvas in a totally unique manner.

What do we see? Take a few minutes to look at the image, as there is much to discover. Did you notice them: the eternally green pine trees pointing up and the church towers with three crosses in top rising up from the mist? Did you see the crucifix hidden within the front conifer like a new-testament burning bush? And the man on the ground before the crucifix, praying, his crutches cast away? The misty twilight and the serene snow fill this place, where a man prays for healing, with tranquil holiness. There is hope, there is redemption and a redeemer, and visibility on restoration and a better future. Is that not our focus during Advent?

At the end of 2021 I came in contact with the Kirby Laing Centre for Public Theology in Cambridge, England. Right away we had a good connection and Craig Bartholomew, director of  KLC, asked me to collaborate on an issue of their magazine The Big Picture, that would be partly devoted to my father as he was born 100 years ago.

When another possible takeover of ArtWay did not work out, KLC was the next organization on the list. KLC reacted with great enthusiasm, which means that the English/international side of Artway will be continued by KLC from the beginning of 2024. Coming year will be spent on the renewal and technical update of the ArtWay website. KLC is so kind to extend the update to the Dutch side of the site as well.  

Like ArtWay KLC is Kuyperian (or neo-Calvinist as the Dutch call it) and ecumenical. KLC intends to become a central point for like-minded reflection on art. To this end KLC is also in the process of setting up an arts research hub, in which scholars and other interested folk across the world take part. In the meantime I have become  a fellow of KLC, participating in the research hub.  

With the help of KLC a publisher was found for the English version of the book about neo-Calvinism and art that was published in Dutch in 2020. This book that will most likely be called ‘Art in the Kuyperian Tradition’ will come out in December 2023. It is edited by Roger Henderson and me and includes authors like Adrienne  Dengerink Chaplin, John Walford, James Romaine, Calvin Seerveld, Lambert Zuidervaart, Wessel Stoker, William Edgar and Victoria Emily Jones. In 2024 KLC wants to organize a symposium around the book, at which point ArtWay will be launched as part of KLC.  

I will continue to be the editor-in-chief of the Dutch side of the website. I am looking forward to collaborating with the new chief editor of the English site, who will be selected before too long. I hope that ArtWay may continue to play a supporting role in the area of art and faith.

In 2023 there will be two visual meditations per month. This number may change again in 2024, but that is up to KLC!

To end let me mention a special development in the Netherlands, where in the framework of UNESCO ArtWay has been selected by the Royal Library in The Hague to become part of its digital heritage collection. In this way ArtWay will continue to be available for future researchers. This makes me very grateful indeed.

We are thankful for all who support our work. Art needs no justification, yet in the world of large numbers art is often sidelined for the qualitative contribution it has to offer. Your contribution is most welcome. See below the details of how you can contribute.

The Artway team wishes you a joyful heart during Advent, Christmas and 2023!

Marleen Hengelaar-Rookmaaker

 

***

May you wish to do so, you can give to ArtWay via the Paypal button on the website, click here and go to the bottom of the page.

For those in North America who wish to make a tax-deductible contribution:

 

*** In the United States contributions should be made out to CMML and mailed to:

Christian Missions in Many Lands
PO Box 13
Spring Lake, NJ  07762

Please include a separate note, clearly marked ‘for Laurel Gasque, via MSC Canada’.

If you are donating online, go to https://www.cmml.us/donate and direct the funds to MSC Canada and then indicate Laurel Gasque’s name when you come to a place where you can send a message to CMML/or maybe it says ‘vendor’.

 

*** In Canada: contributions should be made out to:

MSC Canada
101 Amber St., Ste 16
Markham, ON L3R 3B2

Clearly marked: ‘for the work Laurel Gasque for ArtWay’.

To donate online go to https://msccanada.org/give-now/ and follow instructions, again marking the gift ‘for Laurel Gasque’.

 

Thank you!


More:

06 January 2023 / The Creative Process

by Colin Black

Creative journeys are full of mishaps, accidents, and wrong turnings.

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20 October 2022 / Kuyper, the Aesthetic Sphere, and Art

After three centuries of silence about art in Reformed theological circles in the Netherlands, suddenly there was Abraham Kuyper, whose great merit it was that he once again drew attention to art.

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06 September 2022 / On the Street: The work of JR

by Betty Spackman

Through the project in Tehachapi JR wanted to "give voice to prisoners" and humanize their environment. 

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04 August 2022 / Joseph Beuys: A Spiritual German Artist

Is there a thread that connects the multifaceted work of this artist? My hypothesis is that Beuys’ spirituality is what drives his diverse work. 

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01 June 2022 / Interview with Belinda Scarlett

BELINDA SCARLETT, theatre costume and set designer and ecclesiastical textile artist

Interview by JONATHAN EVENS

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21 April 2022 / Betty Spackman: A Creature Chronicle

When I consider the heavens, the moon and the stars that you have made, what are mere mortals that you are mindful of them… Psalm 8

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08 April 2022 / Historical Models for Crosses and Crucifixes Today

All crosses and crucifixes symbolise joy and salvation. But formally there are two different types: the victorious and the suffering crucifix. 

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16 March 2022 / Three artworks by Walter Hayn

by Gert Swart

These three artworks must have turned Walter Hayn inside out, being so powerfully revealing.

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22 February 2022 / Abstract Expressionism

by Nigel Halliday

It is worth the while to remember the deep seriousness of these artists – even if their suggested answers can look sadly thin.

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07 January 2022 / Artist duo Gardner & Gardner

by Elizabeth Kwant

During COP26 artist duo Gardner & Gardner installed their work I will learn to sit with you and I will learn to listen in Glasgow Cathedral.

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09 December 2021 / ArtWay Newsletter and List of Books 2021

Marleen Hengelaar-Rookmaaker intends to phase out her participation in the day to day oversight of the ArtWay website over the course of the coming new year.

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03 November 2021 / The Seven Works of Mercy in Art

by Marleen Hengelaar-Rookmaaker

This overview will show that these artworks from different ages mirror the theological ideas and the charitable works of their times.

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06 October 2021 / Disciplining our eyes with holy images

by Victoria Emily Jones

Images tend to work a subtle magic on us, especially after years of constant exposure.

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24 August 2021 / On the Gifts of Street Art

by Jason Goroncy

These works represent an act of reclaiming public space for citizens rather than merely consumers.

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27 July 2021 / Russia’s 1st Biennale of Christ-centered Art

An opportunity of dialogue between the church and contemporary art

by Viktor Barashkov

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30 June 2021 / Jacques and Raïssa Maritain among the Artists

by David Lyle Jeffrey

About the influence of Jacques and Raïssa Maritain on Rouault, Chagall and Arcabas.

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13 May 2021 / GOD IS...

Chaiya Art Awards 2021 Exhibition: “God Is . . .”

by Victoria Emily Jones

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21 April 2021 / Photographing Religious Practice

by Jonathan Evens

The increasing prevalence of photographic series and books exploring aspects of religious practice gives witness to the return of religion in the arts.

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23 March 2021 / Constanza López Schlichting: Via Crucis

Perhaps what may be different from other Stations of the Cross is that it responds to a totally free expression and each station is a painting in itself. 

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10 February 2021 / Gert Swart: Four Cruciforms

In a post-Christian era, contemporary Christian artists have to find new ways of evoking the power of the cross. 

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08 January 2021 / Reflecting on a Gauguin Masterpiece

by Alan Wilson

An artist's reflection on Impressionism, Cezanne, Van Gogh and especially Gauguin's Vision after the Sermon.

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11 December 2020 / ArtWay Newsletter 2020

What makes the ArtWay platform so special is its worldwide scope thanks to its multilingual character. There are ArtWay visitors in all countries on this planet. 

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27 October 2020 / Art Pilgrimage

A Research Project on Art Stations of the Cross

by Lieke Wijnia

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18 September 2020 / Interview with Peter Koenig

by Jonathan Evens

Koenig's practice demonstrates that the way to avoid blandness in religious art is immersion in Scripture.

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17 August 2020 / BOOK REVIEW BY HEINRICH BALZ

How Other Cultures See the Bible

Christian Weber, Wie andere Kulturen die Bibel sehen. Ein Praxisbuch mit 70 Kunstwerken aus 33 Ländern.

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17 July 2020 / The Calling Window by Sophie Hacker

by Jonathan Evens  

In 2018 British artist Sophie Hacker was approached to design a window for Romsey Abbey to celebrate the bicentenary of the birth of Florence Nightingale.

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12 June 2020 / A little leaven leavens the whole lump

From South Africa

Ydi Carstens reports on the group show ‘Unleavened’ which was opened in Stellenbosch shortly before the Covid-19 lock-down. 

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14 May 2020 / Jazz, Blues, and Spirituals

Republished: 

Hans Rookmaaker, Jazz, Blues, and Spirituals. The Origins and Spirituality of Black Music in the United States. 

Reviewed by Jonathan Evens

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17 April 2020 / Andy Warhol: Catholicism, Work, Faith And Legacy

by Jonathan Evens 

While Warhol’s engagement with faith was complex it touched something which was fundamental, not superficial.

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25 March 2020 / Sacred Geometry in Christian Art

by Sophie Hacker

This blog unravels aspects of sacred geometry and how it has inspired art and architecture for millennia. 

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22 February 2020 / Between East and West

By Kaori Homma

Being in this limbo between day and night makes me question, “Where does the east end and the west start?”

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15 February 2020 / Imagination at Play

by Marianne Lettieri

To deny ourselves time to laugh, be with family and friends, and fuel our passions, we get caught in what Cameron calls the “treadmill of virtuous production.”

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07 December 2019 / ArtWay Newsletter 2019

An update by our editor-in-chief 
and
the ArtWay List of Books 2019

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16 November 2019 / Scottish Miracles and Parables Exhibition

Alan Wilson: "Can there be a renewal of Christian tradition in Scottish art, where ambitious artists create from a heartfelt faith, committed to their Lord and saviour as well as their craft?"

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23 September 2019 / Dal Schindell Tribute

While Dal’s ads and sense of humour became the stuff of legends, it was his influence on the arts at Regent College in Vancouver, Canada that may be his biggest legacy. 

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04 September 2019 / The Aesthetics of John Calvin

Calvin stated that 'the faithful see sparks of God's glory, as it were, glittering in every created thing. The world was no doubt made, that it might be the theater of divine glory.'

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31 July 2019 / The Legend of the Artist

by Beat Rink

The image of the 'divine' artist becomes so dominant that artists take their orientation from it and lead their lives accordingly.

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02 July 2019 / Quotes by Tim Keller

Many “Christian art” productions are in reality just ways of pulling artists out of the world and into the Christian subculture.

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08 June 2019 / The Chaiya Art Awards

by Jonathan Evens

The Chaiya Art Awards 2018 proved hugely popular, with over 450 entries and more than 2,700 exhibition visitors.

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29 May 2019 / Art Stations of the Cross: Reflections

by Lieke Wynia

In its engagement with both Biblical and contemporary forms of suffering, the exhibition addressed complex topical issues without losing a sense of hope out of sight.

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03 May 2019 / Marianne Lettieri: Relics Reborn

Items that show the patina of time and reveal the wear and tear of human interaction are carriers of personal and collective history. 

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27 April 2019 / Franciscan and Dominican Arts of Devotion

by John Skillen 

This manner of prayer stirs up devotion, the soul stirring the body, and the body stirring the soul.

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13 March 2019 / Makoto Fujimura and the Culture Care Movement

by Victoria Emily Jones

Culture care is a generative approach to culture that brings bouquets of flowers into a culture bereft of beauty.

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08 January 2019 / Building a Portfolio of People

by Marianne Lettieri

Besides hard work in the studio, networking may be the single most important skill for a sustainable art practice.

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01 December 2018 / ArtWay Newsletter December 2018

ArtWay has Special Plans for 2019!

After London, Washington D.C. and New York the city of Amsterdam in the Netherlands is now the anticipated location for a prominent art exhibition with the title Art Stations of the Cross.

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11 October 2018 / The Life, Art and Legacy of Charles Eamer Kempe

Book Review by Jonathan Evens

The significance and spirituality of the work is made clear in ways which counteract the stereotype of mass production of a static style.

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13 September 2018 / A Visit to the Studio of Georges Rouault

by Jim Alimena

Everything we saw and learned reinforced my picture of a great man of faith and a great artist. 

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09 August 2018 / With Opened Eyes: Representational Art

by Ydi Coetsee

How do we respond to the ‘lost innocence’ of representational art? 

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13 July 2018 / True Spirituality in the Arts

by Edith Reitsema

Living in Christ should lead us away from living with a segregated view of life, having a sacred-secular split. 

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17 May 2018 / Beholding Christ in African American Art

Book review by Victoria Emily Jones

One of the hallmarks of Beholding Christ is the diversity of styles, media, and denominational affiliations represented.

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23 April 2018 / Short Introduction to Hans Rookmaaker

by Marleen Hengelaar-Rookmaaker

On the occasion of the establishment of the Rookmaaker Jazz Scholarship at Covenant College, Chattanooga, Tennessee, 12 March 2018

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04 April 2018 / International Art Residency in India

Art for Change, a New Delhi based arts organization with a vision to see art shape society with beauty and truth, will be running its 6th annual International Artist Residency in November 2018.

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15 March 2018 / The Stations of the Cross at Blackburn Cathedral

by Penny Warden  

Perhaps the central challenge for the artist in imaging the body of Christ is the problem of representing the dual natures of the doctrine of the incarnation.

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23 February 2018 / Between the Shadow and the Light

By Rachel Hostetter Smith

In June 2013 a group of twenty North American and African artists from six African countries met for two weeks of intensive engagement with South Africa.

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30 January 2018 / Sacred Geometry in Christian Art

by Sophie Hacker

This blog unravels aspects of sacred geometry and how it has inspired art and architecture for millennia. 

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01 January 2018 / Jonathan Evens writes about Central Saint Martins

Why would Central Saint Martins, a world-famous arts and design college and part of University of the Arts London, choose to show work by its graduates in a church?

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06 December 2017 / ArtWay Newsletter December, 2017

ArtWay's Chairman Wim Eikelboom: "The visual arts cultivate a fresh and renewed view of deeply entrenched values. That is why ArtWay is happy to provide an online platform for art old and new."

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14 November 2017 / The Moral Imagination: Art and Peacebuilding

In the context of conflict transformation the key purpose of creative expression is to provide a venue for people to tell their stories, and for their stories to be heard.

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24 October 2017 / Bruce Herman: Ut pictura poesis?

For the last couple hundred of years the arts have largely been in "experimentation mode"—moving away from the humble business of craft and service toward ideas, issues, and theory.

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04 October 2017 / David Jeffrey: Art and Understanding Scripture

The purpose of In the Beauty of Holiness: Art and the Bible in Western Culture is to help deepen the reader’s understanding of the magnificence of the Bible as a source for European art.

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08 September 2017 / David Taylor: The Aesthetics of John Calvin

Calvin stated that 'the faithful see sparks of God's glory, as it were, glittering in every created thing. The world was no doubt made, that it might be the theater of divine glory.'

Read more...


23 August 2017 / ​Reconstructed by Anikó Ouweneel

A much talked-about exposition in the NoordBrabants Museum in The Netherlands showed works by modern and contemporary Dutch artists inspired by traditional Catholic statues of Christ and the saints. 

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04 July 2017 / Pilgrimage to Venice – The Venice Biennale 2017

When I start to look at the art works, I notice a strange rift between this pleasant environment and the angst and political engagement present in the works of the artists. 

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24 June 2017 / Collecting as a Calling

After many years of compiling a collection of religious art, I have come to realize that collecting is a calling. I feel strongly that our collection has real value and that it is a valuable ministry. 

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02 June 2017 / I Believe in Contemporary Art

By Alastair Gordon

In recent years there has been a growing interest in questions of religion in contemporary art. Is it just a passing fad or signs of renewed faith in art? 

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04 April 2017 / Stations of the Cross - Washington, DC 2017

by Aaron Rosen

We realized that the Stations needed to speak to the acute anxiety facing so many minorities in today’s America and beyond. 

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07 March 2017 / Socially Engaged Art

A discussion starter by Adrienne Dengerink Chaplin

Growing dissatisfaction with an out-of-touch, elite and market driven art world has led artists to turn to socially engaged art. 

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01 February 2017 / Theodore Prescott: Inside Sagrada Familia

The columns resemble the trunks of trees. Gaudi conceived of the whole interior as a forest, where the nave ceiling would invoke the image of an arboreal canopy.

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03 January 2017 / Steve Scott tells about his trips to Bali

In the Balinese shadow play the puppet master pulls from a repertoire of traditional tales and retells them with an emphasis on contemporary moral and spiritual lessons. 

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09 December 2016 / Newsletter ArtWay December 2016

Like an imitation of a good thing past, these days of darkness surely will not last. Jesus was here and he is coming again, to lead us to the festival of friends.

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01 November 2016 / LAbri for Beginners

What is the role of the Christian artist? Is it not to ‘re-transcendentalise’ the transcendent, to discern what is good in culture, and to subvert what is not with a prophetic voice?

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30 September 2016 / Book Review by Jonathan Evens

Jonathan Koestlé-Cate, Art and the Church: A Fractious Embrace - Ecclesiastical Encounters with Contemporary Art, Routledge, 2016.

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01 September 2016 / Review: Modern art and the life of a culture

The authors say they want to help the Christian community recognize the issues raised in modern art and to do so in ways that are charitable and irenic. But I did not find them so. Their representation of Rookmaaker seems uncharitable and at times even misleading. 

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29 July 2016 / Victoria Emily Jones on Disciplining our Eyes

There’s nothing inherently wrong with images—creating or consuming. In fact, we need them. But we also need to beware of the propensity they have to plant themselves firmly in our minds. 

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30 June 2016 / Aniko Ouweneel on What is Christian Art?

Pekka Hannula challenges the spectator to search for the source of the breath we breathe, the source of what makes life worth living, the source of our longing for the victory of redemptive harmony.

Read more...


09 June 2016 / Theodore Prescott: The Sagrada Familia

Sagrada Familia is a visual encyclopedia of Christian narrative and Catholic doctrine as Gaudi sought to embody the faith through images, symbols, and expressive forms.

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19 May 2016 / Edward Knippers: Do Clothes make the Man?

Since the body is the one common denominator for all of humankind, why do we fear to uncover it? Why is public nudity a shock or even a personal affront?

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27 April 2016 / Alexandra Harper: Culture Care

Culture Care is an invitation to create space within the local church to invest our talents, time and tithes in works that lean into the Kingdom of God as creative agents of shalom. 

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06 April 2016 / Jonathan Evens on Contemporary Commissions

The issue of commissioning secular artists versus artists of faith represents false division and unnecessary debate. The reality is that both have resulted in successes and failures.

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12 March 2016 / Betty Spackman: Creativity and Depression

When our whole being is wired to fly outside the box, life can become a very big challenge. To carve oneself into a square peg for the square holes of society, when you are a round peg, is painful to say the least.

Read more...


24 February 2016 / Jim Watkins: Augustine and the Senses

Augustine is not saying that sensual pleasure is bad, but that it is a mixed good. As his Confessions so clearly show, Augustine is painfully aware of how easily he can take something good and turn it into something bad. 

Read more...


11 February 2016 / H.R. Rookmaaker: Does Art Need Justification?

Art is not a religion, nor an activity relegated to a chosen few, nor a mere worldly, superfluous affair. None of these views of art does justice to the creativity with which God has endowed man.

Read more...


26 January 2016 / Ned Bustard: The Bible is Not Safe

Revealed is intended to provoke surprise, even shock. It shows that the Bible is a book about ordinary people, who are not only spiritual beings, but also greedy, needy, hateful, hopeful, selfish, and sexual.

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14 January 2016 / Painting by Nanias Maira from Papua New Guinea

In 2011 Wycliffe missionary Peter Brook commissioned artist Nanias Maira, who belongs to the Kwoma people group of northwestern Papua New Guinea, to paint Bible stories in the traditional style for which he is locally known. 

Read more...