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    Art Studies

    Art tells stories, and some of the stories that have captured my imagination will be told here. 

    It is important to recognize that art is more than putting shape and color on a particular canvas.  In the environmental arts, gardens are designed for various purposes.  We paint with plants and create sacred space.  When flowers are selected and arranged to enhance worship space, we have painted with petals.  When quilts are made and we design spaces in which we live we have engaged in telling a story about ourselves.  Culinary arts thrive from gourmet meals to bisquits and gravy.  Food is our medium.  Visual synthesis occurs constantly, but how often do we recognize the artistic story being told?  How often do we fail to even know we are engaged in art?  I believe that there may be many more artists out there engaging in creative assimilation without recognizing it. 

    Not all stories are the same, thank goodness.  Not all books are novels; not all music is tranquil.  If we drop our snobbery and kick the door open to creative thinking maybe we will recognize that human nature wants to transform its visual world, and when we transform in a life-giving way, we are exercising the parts of ourselves made in God's image.  We are creators.




    • Creative Prayer

      Creative Prayer sm jpg.jpgIn Prayer, a Radical Response to Life, Matthew Fox defines prayer first as growing in awareness of life and its mysteries, learning to feel and breathe and sense life.  He says:

      "Awareness is seeing buildings and teapots and not just thinking 'shelter' and 'drink' but form and shape and beauty and curvature.  it is hearing a sparrow sing and identifying one's own voice with another animal's.  Awareness is the capacity to be wholly where one is and to be alert to the possibilities of enjoyment and wonder, awe and beauty, goodness and peace exactly where one is."

      Creative Prayer explores the nature of prayer seldom examined by Western culture, communion with the all powerful and mysterious giver of life we experience right here and right now through our natural senses.  

    • Blue Roses: Sehnsucht and Such

      The Blue Rose2.jpg        Why are we fascinated with the concept of a blue rose?  Why have humans struggled so to develop a rose of blue since the 1800's?  Do lush, shimmering blue rose petals exist beneath dark green foliage somewhere out there in an uncharted spot of the world?  I doubt it, but I won't give up hope.  

      Why do we desire what haunts us? Why do we want might have been, what cannot be, what simply is no more?  Isn't it enough to smell the rose of scarlet and say "enough"?  Ah, but to long for what we have not hurts so good.  It sneaks up on us when least we expect it and fills us with desire, anticipation, crushing sadness, inexplicable joy, and, most of all, a familiar ache that has become a guest who will not leave. 

      To be human is to have a blue rose.  What is your blue rose?   

    • Sacred Seasons

      Full Candlemassmall.jpgSince the beginning of the Christian Church liturgical worship has revolved around observing different sacred seasons, each having its own distinct flavor, customs, images, colors and theological focus.  As we revolve through the seasons year after year we develop a greater sense of who we are as a Christian community, similar to family traditions that unite us over time and define us as members of a shared community.  There are seven seasons in the church year: Advent, Epiphany, Christmas, Lent, Holy Week, Easter and the Season after Pentecost.  When imaging sacred seasons we learn, meditate and illuminate. 




    • Gardenscapes

      tenebrosus word focus feathered.jpg

      Tenebrosus, Latin for dark or shaded places, describes the green-blue life force we find in the garden.  But gardens are more than just the plants.  They are natural places that have been domesticated by people and made to be outdoor dwellings.  A structure comes into focus upon which plants alternately rest and push which is an art form all its own.  

      Tennebrosus explores the textures, shapes, colors and designs created by the alternating calm and friction  existing in those shaded places where man and nature play together.