the Crucible


      Sculpture is one way to help people move from a theoretical praxis to a physical embodiment. Within this project individuals will be potentially interacting, dialoging, and engaging in a piece of art, and thus witnessing additional aspects of theology with which they tangibly can engage. They will be provided a living story and representation of a kingdom theme that will assist them in their journey of discovering what it means to be Christian.

      Sculpture is an appropriate medium for enhancing the proclamations of the academics because, by its very nature, it engages people in a tangible, visible, and, at times, kinesthetic sense, rather than just a logistically-oriented mind experiment. When viewing art individuals become curious about what it is that drives the shape, the style, the medium, and the creativity behind each piece. Coupled with a theological agenda it becomes a medium that allows for a discussion surrounding it as a demonstration of something more than just elements. Enveloping personal engagement, it becomes a physical representation of something far extending the materials of which it is made. Within art there is a passivity that allows for engagement in a non-threatening way. These are the experiences our culture is longing to have—connectors to the Spirit of God that we all embrace when they happen, like a favorite smell, a song, or tangible manifestation of a Kingdom presence, that momentarily Kingdom moment that transcends us to the heavens, reminding us of our spiritual future and inheritance.

      The talk shops of emerging culture are primed for this discussion. Moving from Hallmark Moments® to Holy Spirit™ will only take a slight demonstration. Most only need the language to which to attach these experiences and the permission to know that they are valid. With flexible truths and a culture that encourages self-discovery and individuality, emerging culture allows itself its own interpretation and grids for truth. Art is a medium to which this generation can relate because of the process of discovery. In art rarely do two individuals find themselves arriving at the same conclusions, yet wonderfully it typically opens up dialogue between those two individuals as to the reasons why. It couples the words to the works and results in a conversatio fide about proclamations they have heard and a demonstration with which they have engaged.

      Common sense would dictate that the best way to find out an artist’s intentions is to hear directly from the artist what it was s/he was attempting to accomplish. If the artist is available or there is a means to discovery what it is one was attempting to communicate, that art is given additional power. This demonstration can merge with articulation (in this case, the text of an accompanying website) to provide further elaboration. When art is provocative enough and engaging, it can become a powerful metaphor with which to communicate a much broader message. An image truly is worth a thousand words.

      This project will not change the world; however on a very micro scale it may have missional impact on my iPod culture. My heart is that it would be a connector for some to further seek out a God with creative intent, passion, and desire to speak to individuals in unique ways. With humble anticipation, my prayer is that this project will aid in our God’s process.


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