Archive for 'art'
Posted on 27. Jun, 2010 by Tim Stoner.
But what if the film (or painting or novel) you are working on never mentions Jesus, or if it does, it is as an expletive? What if it does not proclaim the Gospel? What if it depicts evil straightforwardly and has barely a glimmer of hope? Why waste your time? Why not simply preach a sermon?
The disciples wondered the same thing. They got frustrated at all the confusing and oblique parables Jesus told. Like conservative Christians today, they wanted to know, why bother? So Jesus had to give them a lesson on mystery, on what to aim for if you want to impact a jaded or suspicious (i.e, a postmodern) audience. And, in doing so gave us an apologetic for art.
Posted on 15. Feb, 2010 by Tim Stoner.
As Bono remarks in commenting on Frank Sinatra’s luscious and sensual vocalizations, “It all begins with the word.” Images (and music) serve to enhance the word, they do not supplant it. Put another way, images are the hired help for words.One good image may be worth a thousand words, but one anointed word can save an eternal soul and transform an angry rebel into a saint–a white-hot lover who will worship God for ever and ever and ever.
Posted on 25. Oct, 2009 by Tim Stoner.
Andras Visky, Hungary’s leading playwright, admits readily that he does struggle with the (seeming) absence of God. After all, that was the main theme of his play Juliet: A Dialogue About Love, which I went to see with my wife and son, Jonathan. He does not argue the point with his Eastern European, atheist, artiste friends: “He is absent”, he concurs. If you have lived through the Holocaust and its aftermath in Stalin’s Gulag, you don’t argue, you concede. He went on to describe our current cultural reality as being like DaVinci’s The Lord’s Supper with the central figure erased. Then he said something startling: “The goal of [my] art is to call God back. It is an attempt to try and force him to return”.
Posted on 16. Sep, 2009 by Tim Stoner.
After watching the documentary, Food, Inc., it finally connected: food and how it is produced is a moral issue. Just because it is more efficient to keep hundreds of thousands of cows in pens up to their knees in mud and feces or chickens immobilized in metal boxes their whole lives, breathing methane gas from their droppings, for maximum egg and meat production does not make it morally right. That is not “ruling” as God commanded Adam, that is heartless and cruel oppression. And, I believe, it is disrespectful and dishonors the creature and its Creator. How not to be complicit in this callous brutality is the big question.
Posted on 08. Aug, 2009 by Tim Stoner.
In Treatment paints us no rosy picture of triumphalistic Freudian or Jungian therapeutic models vanquishing the insidious and crippling terrors of the inner mind. It is brutally honest at that point. And quite a few others, as well. But, what the show cannot divulge, and I doubt ever could, is the ultimate vanity of a materialist psychotherapy which treats people as machines, or animals, rather than amazingly complex, spiritual beings crafted by a Creator in His own image and likeness.
Posted on 02. Jul, 2009 by Tim Stoner.
Are we to pretend the bad and the gruesome and the ugly don’t exist? Or is it the task of the Christian artist to show how God is present and or pitches His tent in the middle of the awful? That He is there in the bloody awful terror and loss of starvation, of disease, of war? Is an aspect of our calling to look fiercely and unflinchingly into and through the unbeautiful to expose the mystery of God hidden in the darkness; grace breaking out like a song on the bruised lips of a battered child?