Brokering Peace between Evangelicals and Artists

Gene Fant | December 21, 2016

The desire to make art—even just to decorate your home—is a uniquely human undertaking. This urge appears to be universal, cross-cultural, and pan-historic, something affirmed by both archeology and anthropology.

Humanity has an art-shaped void that demands filling. From the kitsch of Pigeon Forge to the triptychs of the late Middle Ages to the tattoos of the South Seas, we don’t settle for the purely functional. We want pleasing shapes and textures. We want posters and prints to hang on the walls of our dorms and offices.

We don’t merely have an art-shaped void, of course. Both Augustine and Pascal observed that we have a restlessness only God can satisfy, a lack only he can fill.

Cameron J. Anderson’s The Faithful Artist: A Vision for Evangelicalism and the Arts taps into this double vacuum. Anderson, an artist and director of Christians in the Visual Arts (CIVA), brings an expert’s passion to bear in an effort to broker peace between evangelical theology and the secular art world.

Christian and Artist

Earlier this decade, avowedly atheist critic Camille Paglia declared that “the route to a renaissance of the American fine arts lies through religion.” This widely shared essay challenged the art world to avoid a crass materialism that will leave no cultural legacy. The essay’s climax could actually…

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