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Arts

ARTS

Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art
Madeline L’Engle (Waterbrook)
A lovely and insightful reflection by the famed Episcopalian New Yorker and award-winning children’s writer. Although many of her examples are from her own work as a writer, anyone in the arts will benefit from her faithful ruinations and testimony about her calling to the world of the arts.

It Was Good: Making Art to the Glory of God
Edited by Ned Bustard (Square Halo Books)
A tremendous collection produced by the fabulous arts-centric publisher, with good chapters by many different sorts of artists, from Makoto Fujimuro to Bruce Hermann to Mary McCleary (and just a few who art not artists themselves, but offer valuable theological insights, such as a great chapter by Rev. Timothy Keller.) A truly remarkable anthology, stimulating, reflective and beautifully produced.

Art and Soul: Signposts for Christians in the Arts
Hilary Brand and Adrienne Chaplin (InterVarsity Press)
Deep and thoughtful, joyful and exceptionally insightful, this is a must-read for anyone seriously interested in a Christian perspective on the arts. Laden with crisp writing, fascinating perceptions, visual reproductions, this is a treasure-trove of innovative insight, not to be missed.

Rainbows for the Fallen World
Calvin Seerveld (Toronto Tuppence Press)
This legendary author remains one of the most respected, if allusive, scholars about aesthetics from a Reformed Christian perspective. This is a his best known work, valuable for anyone interested in the aesthetic dimension of daily life, or who wants colorfully passionate calls to think faithfully about art, art history, or the restoration of culture, corem deo. See also his other significant anthologies of collected pieces such as Normative Aesthetics, Redemptive Art in Society, and Art History Revisited (Dordt College Press.)

God in the Gallery: A Christian Embrace of Modern Art
Daniel Siedell (Baker Academic)
One of our premium, contemporary curators and art educators, this is a must-read for anyone involved in the contemporary art scene. Then follow up this masterful work with his more recent Who’s Afraid of Modern Art: Essays on Modern Art and Theology in Conversation (Cascade Books.)

Art as Spiritual Perception: Essays in Honor of E. John Walford
Edited by James Romaine (Crossway)
This is a tremendously rich, sophisticated anthology, collected to honor the long work of Professor John Walford teaching art history at Wheaton College. Each essay offers a sterling example of distinctively Christian art historiography and scholarly treatment of religious themes within the field, including significant pieces by Marleen Hengelaar-Rookmaaker, William Dyrness, Joel Sheesley, Calvin Seerveld and more.

PERFORMING ARTS

It Was Good: Making Music to the Glory of God
Edited by Ned Bustard (Square Halo Books)
This is another anthology created by Square Halo Books, bringing together over 30 beautifully crafted pieces about various aspects of music-making, from song-writing to rehearsal to improvisation, from promoting shows to actual performance. There are theologically-rich pieces about jazz, the blues, hip-hop, children’s music, and several great chapters on worship, using the Psalms, even how music can help us with grief and lament.

Resounding Truth: Christian Wisdom in the World of Music (Engaging Culture)
Jeremy Begbie (Baker Academic)
Begbie is a renowned classical composer and orchestral director from England who, after his mid-life conversion, has become a leading scholar and inspiring voice for thinking deeply about faith and the arts, especially in the field of music. This is his must-read work, rigorous and exceptional.

Dancing Through It: My Journey in the Ballet
Jenifer Ringer (Penguin Books)
A captivating memoir by a member of Redeemer Presbyterian NYC who has been a principle dancer with the the New York City Ballet. Her book got much attention not only because of the riveting narrative, but for how she discussed the pressures about weight within the dance profession, and her subsequent struggle with an eating disorder.

It Was Good: Performance for the Glory of God
Edited by Ned Bustard (Square Halo Books)
The third in this extraordinary “It Was Good” series from Square Halo Books includes chapters by working actors, filmmakers, dancers, comics, musicians, and other performing artists.

* These reviews are from a friend of Trinity, Byron Borger. Visit Hearts and Minds Books.