The Ecumenism of Beauty

The Ecumenism of Beauty➷ [Reading] ➹ The Ecumenism of Beauty By Timothy Verdon ➬ – A landmark book on the role of visual arts beauty and aesthetics in ecumenical exchange  In a visual age this book shares the belief that beauty and art can bridge differences Essays from catholic Or A landmark book on the role of visual arts beauty and aesthetics in ecumenical exchange  In a visual age this book shares the belief that beauty and art can bridge differences Essays from catholic Orthodox Anglican and Protestant artists scholars clergy and theologians explore beauty as a means to unify the body of Christ The occasion of the Reformation commemoration year offers a time to reflect on the rich artistic heritage shared by all Christians and an opportunity to learn from other traditions The Ecumenism of Beauty The Ecumenism Epub / is a call to the church to again embrace the arts in service to its liturgy and mission —Sandra Bowden Collector Curator and Past President of Christians in the Visual Arts Essays include Calvin and the Visual Arts The Aesthetics of Soli Deo Gloria The Artist as Contemplative and Art and the Liturgy Contributors to this book includeTimothy Verdon Editor — Museo dell'Opera del Duomo Director Florence ItalyWilliam Dyrness — Fuller Theological Seminary Professor of TheologyJérôme Cottin — University of Strasbourg Professor of Practical TheologySusan S Kanaga —Mount Tabor Ecumenical Centre for Art Spirituality ArtistPhilippo Rossi — Florentine Study Centre of Stanford University Visiting ProfessorMartin Shannon — The Community of Jesus Liturgist and Director of Formation  The work of contributors Susan S Kanaga and Filippo Rossi is currently on display at the Grande Museo del Duomo in Florence Italy For information visit artsandecumenismorg. I have always loved sacred art There is such beauty in icons in the structure and architecture of churches and cathedrals in the stained glass and even the way the sacristy is designed All great art should direct us towards the holy towards the divine mystery When we enter our sacred spaces our hearts minds and souls should all be focused on God on making us aware of the eternalWhen one sits in the silence and stillness of any church one is drawn inward and heavenward The elements around a parishioner should instill a sense of awe and wonderTimothy Verdon has edited a book that reminds me of the visual arts in different ecclesiastical traditions Protestant Catholic Anglican and Orthodox In the preface to the book he uotes Pope Paul VI's words reminding the artist that this world in which we live needs beauty if it would not fall into despair Beauty like truth puts joy in men's hearts and is a precious fruit able to resist the wear of time able to unite one generation with another helping them communicate in shared admirationThroughout the centuries artists have done this Whether it's Andrei Rublev painting his glorious icons or Michelangelo painting the Sistine Chapel or the stained glass of Matisse All of their work makes us remember the visible holiness of the Word becoming Flesh God in man through Christ JesusThis book is filled with beauty and wisdom It reminds the reader of not only the artistry but how each Christian tradition brings its own creative vision in representing the tenets of our faith The language and liturgy of our branches may vary but at the root and heart of our belief is the TrinityFilled with beautiful photographs that capture everything from iconography to modern art I found myself awestruck by how architects painters and sculptors used their craft to glorify God understanding that their talents were first and foremost a gift from Him to be used to glorify HimAlong with the beautiful photographs are essays by Verdon and others that remind us on the relationship throughout history of how beauty and ecclesiology have gone together how the art reflects the theological perspectives of everyone from Calvin to Kontoglou or from churches to abbeys This really shows the rich artistic heritage that our faith shares and makes me grateful that Timothy Verdon assembled this book as a way of reminding us that art can indeed offer us epiphany wonder and a desire to worship I first read Verdon's art criticism book Art and Beauty which I thought was wonderful but understood how some people wanted a view of Christian art that steps outside of Catholicism This book does just that though it does explain a Catholic understanding of sacred art as well It was very interesting to see through the eyes of fellow worshipers who have a different religious tradition than me The tone of the essays vary with the diversity of the authors represented but through this diversity they succeed in providing a window into what sacred art might look like from Calvin to Kontoglou from a modern day artist in an Abbey using abstract work to the uite objective forms of Eastern Orthodox's icons With a taste of history introspection and artistic criticism this collection actually says a lot and was both informative and worship inspiring My favorite pieces were written by artists themselves expositing their methodology and heart and even breaking down the meaning of their creations You are welcome to The Willow Nook for a full review Over the last few years there has been a flowering of Christians of all stripes engaged in the visual arts This has been a vehicle for shared communion between Christians of different ecclesial traditions—Catholic Protestant and Orthodox The Ecumenism of Beauty reflects the deepening and mutual dialogue across denominational lines Each tradition brings their own peculiar emphasis and theological understanding to the artsI'll note my brief criticism from the outset this book is missing a page with contributor bios Maybe I am an odd duck but when I pick up a multi author volume I always turn to the contributor page first Often this only has where they were educated and their current position but it helps me place their perspective tradition and what each brings to a topic Luckily a few of these names were familiar to me and a few paragraphs into each chapter I knew in general what discipline and tradition each author were writing from There was Timothy Verdon the book's editor and eminent historian of Christian religious art JérômeCottin and William Dyrness both active in the theology of arts and culture Vasileios Marinis an expert in Byzantine iconography artists Susan Kanaga and Filippo Rossi and Martin Shannon an ordained Episcopal pastor and devotional authorVerdon's introduction sets the stage He describes the difference between the classical Catholic and Protestant aesthetic as depicted two 16th century paintings Pieter Neefs the Elder painted Antwerp Cathedral full of ornate iconography priests and parishioners and sacramental flourish  Pieter Jansz's painting of the interior of St Odulphuskerk reveals an austere sanctuary where the pulpit alone looks grand Verdon comments on how the interior of these two churches reflect the beliefs and practices of both Catholics and Protestants—Catholic belief in salvation through ecclesial signs and the solo Scriptura of Lutheranism ixProtestant and especially Calvinists enthusiastic iconoclasts that they were are faulted for their lack of religious aesthetic See for example Andrew Greeley's Catholic Imagination which in memory argued that everything beautiful created by Christians came from Catholics whereas Protestants were just good at analyzing stuff However the first two chapters of this volume expose how much this is a gross oversimplifiation Cottin points out that Calvin had no problem with images only images used as props for devotion and he points to accomplished Western artists influenced by Calvinist culture ie Jacob van Ruysdael Vermeer Pieter de Hoock Vincent Van Gogh 9 Dyrness's points out that Calvin's concern about idolatry caused him to put a moratorium on religious imagery but he asks Why after 500 years when Protestants are learning again from medieval practices—praying the labyrinth practicing lectio divina and embracing Igantian spiritual practices and retreats—are their worship spaces and their corporate prayer so often devoid of visual beauty? 19 He argues that the time is ripe for an aesthetical recoveryKanaga one of the artist contributors describes her life as part of the Community of Jesus and her commission along with sculpter Regis Damange to design elements of the Church of the Transfiguration in Orleans MA and discuss her art and practice Kanaga sees abstract sacred art as the perfect vehicle to communicate the indefinite and the ineffible 31 32 Marinis's chapter opens up the spirituality of Byzantine iconography with insights from Fotis Kontoglou 1895 1965 Rossi describes how visual art is an act of contemplation especially for the artist in the creative process Shannon's chapter describes the physical space of the Church of the Transfiguration and the way beauty draws the eccumenical Benedictine community into worship Verdon's closing chapter reflects on the interplay between Art and liturgyAs this book focuses on the relationship between beauty and ecclesiology as I read I kept thinking of what historical theologians call the Medieval transcendentals the true the beautiful and the good In an earlier time these were all held in tension as each reflecting something important about God Evangelicals of the protestant tradition my tribe were suspicious of beauty as ephemeral and idolatrous but we emphasized truth and goodness and two out of three ain't bad  However we are in the midst of a recovery of Protestant theological aesthetics and religious art This book extends the dialogue between Orthodox Catholics and Protestants while honoring the differences and contributions of each traditionAppropriately this book is also beautiful with full color images on glossy pages I think Rossi and Kanaga's chapters were my favorite contributions not only because they showcased their beautiful artwork but because they reflected on their spiritual experience as artists I give this five stars and recommend it to anyone concerned about art and the church—★★★★★

The Ecumenism of Beauty PDF/EPUB á The Ecumenism
  • Hardcover
  • 128 pages
  • The Ecumenism of Beauty
  • Timothy Verdon
  • 05 October 2015
  • 9781612619248