Quality is the first norm for art, but its final norm is love and truth, the enriching of human life, the deepening of our vision.


ArtWay Newsletter December 2016

Newsletter ArtWay December 2016

Dear subscriber,

This work by Dutch artist Gerda Smelik is entitled ‘Advent’ and deals with the coming of Christ into our world. Do you see the child or rather the fetus in the womb of the globe? You may be able to see it better, when you make the image smaller. To me this is an apt rendering of the incarnation of Christ. The Bible tells us an earthly focused gospel about a God who in the beginning created us an earth and about his Son who came down as an embryo in the heart of this earth when it had become dark and dismal. When he completed his journey on earth and had redeemed it, he went back to the Father to return to us anew in the future to dwell with us on a new earth. As humans we are earth-people, inhabitants of clay and sand, commissioned to look well after this terrestrial home.

The good news of Advent and Christmas is that God comes down to us, time and again, in his Son and in his Spirit. We do not need to transcend the world or to ascend to God as on a ladder. Rather he descends to us and fills our hearts and earth with his presence. Recently I heard someone say: ‘Be careful you do not miss him because you are too busy climbing up, while he is coming down.’

Let us celebrate the incarnation this Advent and Christmas, the good news of a pregnant earth. In labour, for sure.

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.

Also this year ArtWay kept on growing. We now have 4000 subscribers (almost to a head) and an average of about 2300 unique visitors to the website a day. With this steady growth also the workload increases. We have had a very busy year, also because we helped organize a large exposition in the Netherlands and I authored a number of publications, among them the chapter ‘The Artistic Legacy of the Reformation and Protestant Artists Today’ for a book about the Reformation published by Wipf & Stock (Eugene, Oregon, USA) this coming spring.

This made the help of Remy de Boer, a new volunteer, very welcome. She helps with the translation work and looks after ArtWay’s Facebook page. We also had some changes in our board. We are thankful for each one of our board members and team of editors and volunteers who help make our work and mission possible.

This past January we started a new blog, which makes it possible to post reactions to new books and current events. We also just started an Art & Music section, where we will combine art old and contemporary and music popular and classical in various ways. This will include videos for use in church services. When you have music and art videos that might interest us, please send them to us.

This is only one of the ways we would like to hear from our subscribers. Do give us feedback, send us information and tips, ask for advice etc. And above all: do spread the word about ArtWay!

Finally, we would like to ask for your support of our work. We all work as volunteers and thus with minimal expenses, but without your gift ArtWay would not be possible. Therefore, a big word of thanks to all of you who supported us last year!

Your gift can be remitted online. Go here to give a donation

If you prefer to send us a cheque, here are our account details: Account holder: Stichting Artway, Sloetmarke 33, Zwolle. IBAN: NL25INGB0003847269; BIC (also known as Swiftcode): INGBNL2A.

Canadian citizens and residents can claim a tax credit by giving through MSC Canada, specifying that your gift is 'to support the work of the Lord under the direction of Laurel Gasque, Associate Editor of'

The mailing address is:

MSC Canada
101 Amber Street, UNIT 18
Markham, Ontario L3R 3B2

The ArtWay team and board wish you a rich and beauty-filled Christmas and 2017.

With warm regards,

Marleen Hengelaar-Rookmaaker

* The lyrics are from the song ‘Festival of Friends’ by Bruce Cockburn.

For the ArtWay list of books published in 2014 - 2016, click here