There is so much good happening in the world of theology and the arts. At the end of each week, we'd like to share with you a few of the great things we've discovered this past week from around the internet.
The Ortodox Arts Journal featured a compelling article about the New Romanian Iconography Movement currently occuring in Romania. It's a language rediscovered and a fascinating, well-illustrated piece.
In the aftermath of the atheist regime, religious life has revived in all its dimensions: art, liturgy, parish life and monastic communities. There are new parish churches, new monasteries, new canonized saints as well as new Christian martyrs of the communist persecution receiving a large popular veneration and waiting to be canonized. In this context, the icon has become a common presence in homes and offices.
There have been a plethora of Bible movies lately, it seems, and there's no better resource for information on Bible movies than Peter Chattaway's Film Chat. In October, Chattaway visited the set of KIlling Jesus in Morocco and paticipated in interviews with many members of the cast and crew. His contextualization of that "Jesus film" with regards to others is invaluable as we wade through the grandiose marketing about Jesus films coming our way as the Easter season approaches.
The other significant departure from most previous films — and in this, Killing Jesus is following the template set by O’Reilly and Dugard’s book — is that this film aims to focus on the “historical” aspects of the story while staying respectfully agnostic on the question of whether there was anything “miraculous” about the ministry of Jesus. The film does begin with prophetic dreams and wise men who follow a star to Bethlehem, and it does end with an empty tomb. But there aren’t any resurrection appearances, nor are there any of the more obvious miracles such as walking on water or turning water to wine.
We have a group of students staying up late and show-hopping at the annual South By Southwest music festival this week. Check out our Academic Director, Nate Risdon's, Instagram account for lots of photos and videos.
Speaking of Brehm faculty/staff social media accounts, both W. David O. Taylor and Kutter Callaway frequently tweet recommendations and 140 character reviews of worship, theology, and the arts book. This past week, they recommended all the books you see pictured above.
Looking for some music for Lent? City Church San Francisco released a new album recently called Love Divine, Victorious, and, according to their website "during Lent/Easter, all proceeds will go to the Kulu Fund, an organization whose mission is to improve the health of women and children by building and funding hospital projects in developing countries (www.kulufund.org)."
The financial struggles of most artists are a perennially important topic. The music industry was hit first by the most recent wave of technological change, and musicians of all ilk have been trying to figure out how to "make it" in today's world. Theories abound on how to do it. Composer Aaron Gervais wrote a long article worth attention, "Why Musicians Aren't Paid More Fairly."
Founding an ensemble or composing music are not entrepreneurial activities because the models don’t benefit from being scaled up, and they are much too easy to copy. Even if you could release one album per hour or get 10,000 violinists for your orchestra, your music wouldn’t be any more profitable (probably the opposite). Whatever artistic path you take, you’re just adding another drop to the endless sea of music that surrounds us every day.
Favorite of C.S. Lewis and his fellow Inklings, Charles Williams is one of our favorite writers too. Paul Blair, writing for Transpositions, explores Williams' legacy in an article entitled "The Timelessness of Charles Williams."
These scholars suggest an enduring quality about his work due to its identification with man’s condition and an inkling that his response is an orthodox challenge to postmodernism. Dorothy Sayers says that his work is freed from being bound by a sense of period because of his theological perspective. Williams, not being a historical or metaphysical relativist, has a different nonrelative view that stands in contrast with postmodernity...
Finally, speaking of the Inklings and their inspirations, Christian History Institute recently devoted an entire issue of their magazine to George MacDonald, G. K. Chesterton, J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, Dorothy L. Sayers, Charles Williams, and Owen Barfield. The entire issue can be purchased for $5 or downloaded as as PDF for free.
Dark lords in dark towers, cheerful hobbits, lions who roar whole worlds into being, wise old women, mysterious elves, and several quick-witted detectives that you have probably seen on Masterpiece Theatre. The Christian authors who gave us these timeless tales gave us something more: a vision encompassing all of life from economics to art to education.