The reflections of a rural archdeacon on life and issues in the Yorkshire Dales. Supporting over 180 churches in an area that covers Teesdale, Swaledale, Wensleydale, Nidderdale, Harrogate and Wetherby, a Church of England archdeacon shares some of the questions and challenges that everyday ministry throws up.
The question of what Art speaks to you and inspires you is a very culturally dependent and subjective thing. One of the modern sculptures I like best in any church is Jonathan Clarke's Way of Life in the West tower of Ely Cathedral. It was commissioned about fifteen years ago by the Friends of Ely Cathedral, the Dean and Chapter and the Cambridge-based Theology Through the Arts Project. I don't think I can post an image without infringing copyright, but you can see it at www.flickr.com/photos/fizikal_rex/3862526344/in/set-72157616580968572
My eye was caught recently by news of a new £10,000 prize to be awarded by the Jerusalem Trust for the best developed proposal for a new work of art in a church. Could your church be the one to convince the judges that you can capture something unique in a piece of art specially created for your church and enhancing the experience of worshipper, pilgrims and casual visitors who come? The Theology Through the Arts project had a very special way of working in that it brought together small clusters of artists and experts to collaborate closely - an artist, theologian and dancer or a librettist, theologian and musician, for example. I think that this is an extremely successful and illuminating way to promote the kind of creativity that expresses deep truth.
The poster above gives the the information you will need about the competition and may I invite you to think further and certainly to contact Diana Coulter at the Cathedral and Church Buildings Division firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in knowing more? Go on, have a go! You can also read about the things you need to consider in commissioning a new work of art in this publication
Published by the Archbishops' Council
Cathedral and Church Buildings Division