Saturday, November 19, 2005

The Invisible Children

It has been a long time since a short film trailer captivated my heart like this. Watch it. I have ordered the rough cut DVD, and might invite friends over to watch it.

It is coming. The film is due out in about a year, as the film makers will be returning to Sudan/Uganda to finish filming. My prayer would be that it might change the world. We need more of this kind of film making.

HT (again) to
Rhett Smith.

Walking Forward Through Time

On Tuesday afternoon in DC, I cheated. I took the afternoon off from my seminars and went to the National Gallery of Art. And I was interested to learn anew how our world has evolved; its something to think about.

Rest on the Flight into Egypt, David Gerard, 1510, Bruges

The gallery is arranged in such a way that you can walk forward or backward through time. I choose forward, which moves one through the gallery in a west to east direction.

You begin in the Netherlands and France in the 15th Century, and move forward slowly, through the centuried to modern times.

Artwork of the 15th and 16th centuries is almost soley focused around stories from Scripture and the person of Christ. One is struck by the almost complete devotion and fixation with themes from the Bible. Images of Christ and Old Testament characters fill every room.

However, as one moves from room to room, over time, the subject matter of the paintings changes, and modern life and culture take more precedence. Characters from the Bible loose their dominance. Paintings by the Masters increasingly change to scenes of aristocratic life, country landscapes, with the occasional portrait of a church father. As one continues walking east, the stories of art have evolved away from stories of the saints and Scriptures.

Those living in the early centuries lead lives surely full of struggle, hardship, turmoil, and a constant awareness of the tenacity of life. Through the centuries, as lives became more comfortable, those Bible stories, the narratives of real life, and the remarkable life of the Savior tend to fade in importance.

The Artist's Garden at Vetheuil, Claude Monet, 1880

We have become too comfortable in our aristocratic lives, in our gardens fair, in our inventions and society. We don't need those old stories, we have made a new story that is fairer to the eye, and more easy to digest. I think I fear for our modern society. We have forgotten from where we have come.

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