I’m sorry this post is late. It’s been a crazy week with a couple of really cool things happening. First, Thursday (yes, the day I’m supposed to post here, which I usually do in the evenings — the best time for me to do writing of any kind), my oldest son and I went to hear Makoto Fujimura speak about his new book which will be coming out sometime this summer. If you don’t know who Makoto Fujimura is, he is a very well-known abstract artist. You can find out more about him at http://www.makotofujimura.com. The work that he had on display on Thursday evening was from his work on “The Four Holy Gospels” that he did for the 400th anniversary of the King James version of the Bible.
His new book is called Culture Care and it is about our culture and how we need to care for it and not just complain about or live in fear of it. He talks about how it is like working in a garden and he related how much Jesus spoke in his parables about things that were related to gardening (i.e. sowing seeds). He related that he does some gardening and how one day while he was gardening, he looked at the dirt in his hands and realized that it is “death” — death of plants, animals, insects, and from that “death” new life grows. He was wonderful to listen to and to realize that he is a very deep thinker.
He also related a wonderful story about when he and his wife were first married and he was a struggling artist and she was in graduate school. One Friday, he was at home trying to figure out what they were going to eat that weekend and his wife come home with a bouquet, and he got angry because she spent money on flowers when they could’ve used that $5 for food, and she reminded him that “they need to feed their souls too”. He said that he never forgot that lesson, although he couldn’t tell you what they ate that weekend, and, he said, he also painted those flowers.
Today there was an art show featuring local artists near our home and because our youngest son is showing a talent and interest in art, we took him to see the art and meet the artists. There were only about ten artists there, but we saw oil paintings, acrylic paintings, watercolor paintings, pastel drawings and cartoons. I have known two of the artists that were there for several years. Our older two boys took some art lessons with them at a homeschool co-op years ago, so not only was it fun to go explore the work of local artists, it was fun to renew a couple of old acquaintences.
We were there for the last hour and fifteen minutes of the show and we were blessed to be able to speak with all of the artists there. The gentleman who displayed his oil paintings actually is unable to use his hands, and he uses his mouth to paint beautiful photos. There was an artist there who does mostly water colors, but also had a beautiful acrylic painting of a snowy owl, and he had some wonderful photos where he had some thing(s) hidden in some of his paintings and our son enjoyed looking for the hidden things. I ended up purchasing two of his prints that I really liked.
We were very happy to spend some time with Sam Mylin and find out that he is looking to start an art club in the building the art show was held in, beginning in January. He wants to teach kids, and our son would love to be a part of it, so we are praying that Sam will be able to have that art club. Sam is a fun guy to be around. He draws cartoons, but he knows a lot about other art mediums as well,
I also purchased a note card (which I have no intention of sending to anyone) of a beautiful snow scene that was done in pastels by one of the gentlemen at the show. I also hope to order some lovely watercolor paintings in Christmas ornaments by Irene Miller. They were absolutely beautiful and would make great Christmas gifts as well!
It was a joy to be able to support local artists. Artists have a hard time earning a living and one of them that I spoke with today said, “Well, it’s not something you really need, and that makes it hard.” But, thinking back on Makoto Fujimura’s lesson, “we need to feed our souls” and the beauty of art feeds our souls, so, in a way, we do need it. If you know a local artist or want to support one of the ones I saw today, I encourage you to do so. The names of the artists I saw today are: David Howard Moore, Bill Puglisi, Gary G. Greene, Irene Miller, Sandra Roland, Sam and Kate Mylin, Stephen Leed and David Nolt. I would imagine that you can find out more about any one of them simply by Googling their names.
Don’t just feed your physical body, but your soul as well.