Friday, February 6, 2009
William Barclay said, “The only unanswerable argument for Christianity is a Christian life.” Terri and I spend Wednesday evenings with Greg and Susan Card, two brilliant artists who live Christian lives with graceful humility. And, as Matt Peterson says, “Humility is beautiful in every season.” We meet in their studio for dinner, conversation, music, prayer. Greg is working on a series of paintings on black with pearlescent polymers whose colors shift as light moves across them. The effect is stunning. The other night it occurred to me that it would be difficult, if not impossible, to photograph these paintings. They must be experienced, in-person. This, of course, would eliminate publication in journals or books, narrowing the audience and limiting the exposure. Why make art, if not to be seen? Why does God make flowers in remote mountain regions, or fantastical creatures who roam the sea-floor, never to be seen by man? Is exposure the ultimate goal? Or is the joy born out of the process sufficient? For Greg, the joy is evident whenever he shares a new work. He is on the path every true artist yearns for, the path of discovery. Perhaps art is merely the communication of a discovery, or, perhaps art awaits discovery. I don’t know. I am just grateful for the gift of Greg and Susan’s friendship.