May 20, 2012

Divine Nature

For since the creation of the world 
God's invisible qualities-his eternal power and 
divine nature 
- have been clearly seen.
Romans 1:20

These words spoke deeply of the experience I encountered  several years ago as I began to nurtured an interest in photography. Images framed by my lens continuously placed me in companionship with God. The reflection of the world in the medium of digital photography illuminated the magnitude of God’s presence on earth and in the creation of ALL things therein.

May 17, 2012

Art and Faith

Church bells ring at noon next door to the Nasher Sculpture Garden patio. 

I sip ice tea listening, hearing the patio’s water wall streaming in unison with bells. 

The occasion is an ‘artist’s date’ in Julia Cameron style; “a nurturing replenishment of creative consciousness”. Thus a solitary trek into the caverns of the city to find this walled seclusion of bubbling water and tree-scaped shade that creates a canvas for the sculptures lolling about on the lawn. Heart and soul love it here. Textures, form, pattern, and mediums portraying metaphors of each artist’s vision awakens the lobes of emotion and meaning . 

That hemisphere of the brain that responds to the abstract, the symbolic, and the tangential; that hemisphere hums in a place like this. Hums in the company of molded metals, polished stone, burnished bronze, botanical art and streaming water walls. Literally, I experience a mental shift as my thoughts react to the dense sensory input. The mind rises out of mundane tangles to climb scaffolding, step by stairs, to musings that stretch beyond present realties. 
“Art is not an end in itself. It introduces the soul into a higher spiritual order...” Thomas Merton
I welcome the sense of spiritual FILLING and subsequent BALANCE that results from the exercise of this lesser used grey matter. Exercise via the viewing of the creative. Viewing the creative enlarges the realm of possibilities and inspires alternatives, confirming that there is yet another way to ‘see’ and more room to grow. Viewing the creative demands attention, invites appreciation and expects ‘seeing’ in a different way. Seeing beyond a cursory glance, ‘seeing’ that is magnified and then juxtaposed against ‘seeing’ that is global, ‘seeing’ that carries thoughts beyond the sculpture garden to mental trajectories of the immense, the omnipotent, of the God shaped.

My experience with the creations of artists never fails to blend with thoughts of the original Creator. I find truth in writer Ann Voskamp’s thinking: “Creativity is good theology;”and in Thomas Merton’s statement, “Music, and art, and poetry attune the soul to God.” Experiencing art travels parallel to and then is woven into the experience of faith. The human potential for and pursuit of creation reflects the Holy Spirit within us.

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