Art for Art’s Sake
I can’t admit to being an art lover or, even for that matter, a great appreciator of art. I’m more of ‘I like what I like and you can keep the rest’ sort of art lover, but there is little doubt, regardless of my own preferences, that there has been a strong connection between art and religion ever since humanity first started creating things.
Some of the earliest identifiable religious art dates as far back as 40,000 years BC (some believe longer). And it is largely accepted that the best art is driven by faith in God. Emil Brunner says that “a world, a society in which religious belief dies out will in time also suffer artistic decay.” For “no art will be able to continue flourishing in a soil in which humanity has dried up. Where people are no longer capable of great feelings, where their intellectual horizon has lost that broad sense of the infinite, and where their understanding of life is devoid of any metaphysical or religious depth”, art will become superficial and degenerates to virtuosity.
I hope you all had an opportunity to see the anamorphic art exhibition at church over the August bank holiday weekend. I would like to say a big ‘Thank You!’ to everyone who helped, particularly those who gave up their time during the hottest bank holiday on record, to make it a success, and to Susan for putting the exhibition together. This sort of art interests me and grabs my attention. It reminds me of faith and the big part faith plays in our relationship with and belief of God.
In order to view an anamorphic art piece as the artist intended, you need to alter your perspective.
Faith does the same. Through the eyes of faith our perspective is changed and God becomes the creator of the universe rather than it
being made through a series of unconnected random events, and Jesus, a simple carpenter from Nazareth, becomes the Son of God and Saviour.
Sometimes we need to work to get our faith perspective just right, so that we see things correctly just the way God intended. We can do this by reading scripture, taking time in conversation with God and to look more closely at the person of Jesus, in order to see what is intended.
When you look at Jesus, what do you see?
Does your perspective need to change?