The following list of resources is adapted from one compiled by Sandra Bowden. Our thanks to her for her generosity.
Exists to nourish the soul of our city through the arts by creating space for artists, arts organizations, churches, schools, and the community to come together for encouragement, education, and engagement.
Friday Arts Project
Friday Arts Project is an Arts collective curating conversation and fostering craft to call forth a fully human community.
Sacred Muse is a collaborative creative community developed by artists for artists with a goal to connect creatives with people who are active/prolific in like art forms and faith, to strengthen creativity, deepen spirituality, and to increase in personal skill and artistry.
Christians in Visual Arts (CIVA)
Explores the relationship between the visual arts and the Christian faith. With artists, collectors, historians, designers etc. Founded 1979.
International Arts Movement (IAM)
Founded on the belief that our culture is broken and needs to be restored to wholeness.
A forum for worship and arts and exists to help young people connect their imagination, creativity, and enthusiasm to all the possibilities inherent in worship and the arts.
Association of Scholars in Christianity and the History of Art (ASCHA)
dedicated to the facilitation and promotion of scholarship examining the historical and contemporary relationship between Christianity and the visual arts. dedicated to the facilitation and promotion of scholarship examining the historical and contemporary relationship between Christianity and the visual arts.
The Brehm Center
The Brehm Center is a spiritually nurturing community that guides and resources Christian leaders to critically engage culture, explore their calling, and creatively integrate worship, theology, and the arts.
Calvin Institute for Christian Worship
Aims to promote scholarly study of the theology, history, practice of worship and renewal of worship in local congregations. Gives our grants, publishes books, and has annual gathering.
Anselm Society, Colorado Springs
The Anselm Society is a project of a network of churches in Colorado…churches that share a unique vision for the future of the Christian faith. Their goal is a renaissance of the Christian imagination. They aim to accomplish it through two complementary projects: building up tomorrow’s great artists, and preparing tomorrow’s Church to be inspired by them.
Eliot Society, Washington, D.C.
The Eliot Society is named after T.S. Eliot, the modernist poet who insisted that Christian faith and artistic culture are inseparable. The Eliot Society exists to create places where such people can gather and connect, and where “culture care” can happen.
ArtWay is a web-based service for congregations and individual believers to increase understanding of the role of visual arts in deepening faith, worship and the communication of truth and hope within culture. Resources include subscription-based weekly visual meditations, profiles of international artists, information about organizations, museums, galleries, and many other features.
Sacred Art Pilgrim and Sacred Art Meditations
This website charts the journey of John A. Kohan, artist and aficionado of modern sacred art. It includes indexes of sacred artists and schools of sacred art, a weekly artist profile, and relevant articles. The site links to Sacred Art Meditations that explores visual themes of sacred art.
Seeing Art History with James Romaine
Website: Seeing Art History YouTube Channel
James is creating a series of art history talks that relate to religious images. His first was launched in December of 2015 for Advent on the Annunciation.
Carmella Jarvi’s Top 10 List for Artists
Artist and entrepreneur Carmella Jarvi offers advice for artists seeking to find a place for their work, build an audience, and earn income.
Bowden Collections offers a variety of traveling exhibitions available for rental to museums, churches, colleges and seminaries and similar institutions. Venues are responsible for the rental fee and shipping, usually to the following location.
Christians in Visual Arts Traveling Exhibits
For over 30 years CIVA has sponsored a variety of traveling exhibitions available for rental to museums, galleries, colleges, churches, and other institutions. Venues are responsible for the rental fee and shipping, usually to the following venue.
Seeds Fine Art
Seeds curates exhibitions that generate dialog between visual art and viewers and support the artist’s call to create. The curatorial team presents God’s love, hope and salvation through traveling conceptual art exhibits.
Art and Faith Books
Culture Care: Reconnecting with Beauty for Our Common Life by Makoto Fujimura
“Culture is not a territory to be won or lost but a resource we are called to steward with care. Culture is a garden to be cultivated.”
Many bemoan the decay of culture. But we all have a responsibility to care for culture, to nurture it in ways that help people thrive. In Culture Care artist Makoto Fujimura issues a call to cultural stewardship, in which we become generative and feed our culture’s soul with beauty, creativity, and generosity. We serve others as cultural custodians of the future.
This is a book for artists, but artists come in many forms. Anyone with a calling to create—from visual artists, musicians, writers, and actors to entrepreneurs, pastors, and business professionals—will resonate with its message. This book is for anyone with a desire or an artistic gift to reach across boundaries with understanding, reconciliation, and healing. It is a book for anyone with a passion for the arts, for supporters of the arts, and for “creative catalysts” who understand how much the culture we all share affects human thriving today and shapes the generations to come.
Culture Care includes a study guide for individual reflection or group discussion.
Bandersnatch: C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and the Creative Collaboration of the Inklings by Diana Glyer
C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and the Inklings met each week to read and discuss each other’s work-in-progress, offering both encouragement and blistering critique. How did these conversations shape the books they were writing? How does creative collaboration enhance individual talent? And what can we learn from their example?
Featuring full-page illustrations by James A. Owen, Bandersnatch offers an inside look at the Inklings of Oxford, and a seat at their table at the Eagle and Child pub. It shows how encouragement and criticism made all the difference in The Lord of the Rings, The Chronicles of Narnia, and dozens of other books written by the members of their circle. You’ll learn what made these writers tick, and more: inspired by their example, you’ll discover how collaboration can help your own creative process and lead to genius breakthroughs in whatever work you do.
Seeing the Unseen: Launching and Managing a Church Gallery by Sandra Bowden and Marianne Lettieri
If you are either consider the launch of an art gallery in your church or seeking to further develop an existing one this handbook is for you. Launching or developing a church gallery can be a wonderful venture in the life of your congregation. Because all galleries require a body of practical skills—lighting, framing, artist contracts, openings, and so on—this volume provides the kind of hands-on knowledge that will be important to your success. But the pages of this Handbook aim do accomplish some more. In fact, there are as many kinds of church galleries as there are churches. Because of this, launching a gallery calls for something beyond well-executed “how-to” steps: it is an invitation to embark on an exciting and creative journey of faith! Can be purchased from the CIVA Store, www.civa.org
For the Beauty of the Church: Casting a Vision for the Arts by David O. Taylor
Historically the church was deeply involved in the arts, leading the way in beauty, technical ability, and funding. In many churches today the arts are an afterthought. Taylor takes the reader beyond status quo, fads, cultural imitation, and utilitarianism to develop a robust vision for the place of the arts and artists in our churches.
Scribbling in the Sand: Christ and Creativity by Michael Card
Singer, songwriter and diligent student of Scripture, Michael Card is well known for the depth of his lyrics and the artistry of his music. But far more significant than the songs he has penned is the source of his inspiration–the creativity embodied in Jesus Christ, the incarnate Word of God. In this book Card explores the biblical foundations of true Christian creativity. Whether we think of ourselves as creative or not, all of us are created in the image of our Creator God, and thus creativity is a vital expression of our discipleship. With Jesus as his model, Card shows how understanding God’s creative imagination leads to a lifestyle of humility, obedience and servanthood. And he invites us to follow God’s creative call through worship and community.
It Was Good: Making Art to the Glory of God by Ned Bustard
What does it mean to be a creative individual who is a follower of the creative God? This book seeks to answer that question through a series of essays that offer theoretical and practical insights into art making from a Christian perspective. The text is enhanced with color images of artwork by past masters and renowned contemporary artists.
Objects of Grace: Conversations on Creativity and Faith by James Romaine
The collection of conversations with ten contemporary artists of the Christian faith explores their artistic processes and works of art as they offer insights into the intersection of personal faith and creativity.
Spaces for the Spirit: Adorning the Church by Nancy Chinn
With dozens of photographs and practical tutorials, this book will equip any church community to appreciate the role of visual arts in the worship environment. Chinn provides numerous case studies of actual parish projects, analyzes the emotional quality of design elements, and gives guidelines for organizing the work of artists in the church.
The Substance of Things Seen: Art, Faith, and the Christian Community by Robin M. Jensen
While the average person rarely sees it, the visual arts play a subtle yet profound role in the teaching and formation of faith, both for individuals and religious communities. This book is meant to engage church leaders and artists in constructive conversation about the role of art in Christian life and practice.
Visual Faith: Art, Theology, and Worship in Dialogue by William A. Dyrness
What is the basis for a relationship between the church and visual imagery? Can the art world and the Protestant church be reconciled? Grounded in historical and biblical research, Dyrness offers an intriguing, substantive look into how visual imagery can and should play an important role in modern Christianity.
Creative Church Handbook by J. Scott McElroy
If the future is creative, is it any wonder that sometimes the church seems stuck in the past? Now is the time for the church to reclaim its role as a center of creativity. Among your members are artists, musicians and other creatives whose gifts can enhance your worship, inform your theology and impact your community. Christian arts advocate J. Scott McElroy gives a comprehensive vision and manual for unleashing creativity in your congregation so you can connect with the more visual, aural, participatory and expressive generation that is rising up within the church today.