CLOSING RECEPTION and ARTIST TALK Saturday, January 5, 2019 time TBA
Apart from the Christmas Eve service, this is the only event where the entire collection will be available to view. The event will also include an extended Artist Talk and Q&A.
The New is in the Old contained; the Old is by the New explained. -St. Augustine
For every shadow is out of proportion, an imperfect representation of the thing that casts the shadow.
True and Better is a visual exploration of biblical typology. Typology is a theological method used to demonstrate how people, events, and institutions in the Old Testament correspond to, and foreshadow, other people, events or institutions that come later. The authors of the New Testament employed this method, through which select Old Testament figures are shown to foreshadow Jesus in their narratives and through their characteristics. These figures are called types of Jesus. Because he is the fulfillment of each type, only Jesus is called the antitype. The type is the shadow, and Jesus is the figure that casts that shadow.
*** I first heard the term typology in a sermon in my church, and I was immediately intrigued. I got the opportunity to put typology into practice through a devotional with She Reads Truth several years ago. The devotional took place during advent, and it was incredibly rewarding to see layers of God’s multifaceted redemption narrative revealed to me in new ways during a season which is always filled with an expectant longing.
I have since dreamed about visually processing the fruits of a typological study of the Old Testament. BVBC chose five types for me to illuminate for this exhibition: David, Moses, Isaac, Abel, and Adam. I chose to paint a sixth work examining the idea of The Word and The Word Made Flesh. In my artistic practice, I have always been attracted to duality and tensions as part of the same story, and that often results in two panel works, or diptychs. In this case, I explored the type on the left panel, and though many of these panels are more muted or shadowy, they are not without visual traces of grace and truth. On the right panel, I worked to illuminate the antitype, Jesus: it is the first panel expanded, inverted, elevated, or intensified.
In these diptychs, I utilized reflected or mirrored compositions or imagery that trails from one canvas to the next. Every panel contains explorations of shadows and light. Though each panel could be appreciated by itself, the two have more impact together, telling a more complete story. In this way, the work reflects the idea that while the story of the type and the story of Jesus are still valuable if taken apart from one another, viewing them as part of the same narrative creates a richer and more complex picture of God’s redemptive plan.
It is my joy to create works that can surround the people of Blue Valley Baptist during the Advent season. I hope they deepen your experience of God’s story as it unfolds for you again this year. Like these types, we live in history as a part of God’s salvific narrative. To explore these familiar figures in the details of their triumphs, their mistakes, and God’s faithfulness in their lives is always encouraging to me. Exploring them typologically reveals a new layer of God’s glory, a foretaste of redemption.
The God who made us is Lord and King of all history. His revelation is multifaceted and generational, and it reached its climax when he entered the world as the helpless infant, Jesus. I am so limited as a human being, and it still astounds me that this fragile child for which the world could make no room became the truer and better fulfillment of all things we see in the Old Testament. In this way, God’s revelation is paradoxically complex and clear. Jesus stands at the center of all things, he is the absolute truth, and the key to every part of the biblical narrative.