North Park has a nice gallery in our classroom building in which we are treated to a constant display of art — some from students, some local artists, and sometimes from the professors. Getting yourself displayed like this is as good as a publication in other disciplines. So, when I recently received a copy of Faith and Vision: Twenty-five Years of Christians in the Visual Arts (ed. Cam Anderson and Sandra Bowden; Square Halo Press, 2005), I was keen to spend an evening browsing its pages.
It was a good, good evening of pondering, seeing, and imagining. One finds here a graphic and written apologetic of the arts for Christians. In fact, an apologetic of sorts for a way of doing Christian art as a self-conscious form that distinguishes itself — through its own narrative — from non-Christian art. I wish I could see Tim Hawkinson’s “Pentecost” — p. 46 — in a gallery someday or Heidi Peterson’s “Vigil” (p. 54). I see Robert Dayton Castleman has a piece here — and he recently had a fascinating piece displayed at North Park. I could go on.
High quality presentation and photography; a gentle flow of text; perspectives from various corners of the thought-world; and a rich mixture of artists all over the globe make this a book for Christian artists to treasure.
I shall use it as a table top book — place it in my office with Biblica — and hope students and colleagues and visitors will find time to browse through its rich and evocative images.
No use pretending: I’m one of those folks who likes art, who will always be drawn to enter into a gallery, but who is untrained-as-can-be. I took a class in college on art, and I have read a book or two about the history of art, but it’s always an adventure for me.