The anniversary of the Reformation can be celebrated in so many different ways, and this church is remembering the Reformation by celebrating the artistic gifts God has given members of their community.
We interviewed Rebecca Schnorr, a print artist and part-time art instructor from Christ Lutheran Church in Marshall, Michigan, to learn more about the event they’re hosting to celebrate the Reformation. They are working with the Art Center of Battle Creek to host a juried art show called “Artistic Expressions of Faith—The Reformation Remembered.”
Can you give a general overview of the event?
This event offers a wonderful opportunity for Christian artists to express their faith through their art and have it associated with a great venue like the Art Center of Battle Creek. Artists working in all visual media are invited to submit work for the juror to review.
I’m hoping that artists will find inspiration from the history in both a Christian and cultural context.
This art show is a good example of how sometimes when you have a seed of faith, plant it, and get out of the way, you see what God can do.
How did the idea for the art show come about?
The idea came to me last year when I decided to create a new work to commemorate the Reformation to show the relationship between the printing press and the Reformation.
I asked a friend at church, Virginia McCain, who does photography, if she would like to make something too and she agreed. At that point, I was thinking we would just show them together at church.
A few days later, though, I was struck with the idea of having a small art show and inviting others to submit art. The experience I gained by helping organize small holiday art shows in Marshall made me feel confident in this idea.
Tell us about the planning.
This art show has just been a work of faith in action. After our initial idea, we spoke with Pastor Boedecker to get his thoughts on our idea, looking to see if it was possible to associate the event with the church. He loved the idea and suggested that we submit a request for funding from the church’s endowment fund.
These funds will be used for prize money, printing, and other expenses. Prizes will be awarded to the top three Best of Show, the Juror Award, Best Interpretation of Theme, Best Use of Media, and Creative Use of Material. There are also awards for the children submissions: Juror Award, Best in Theme, Best Use of Media, and Creative Use of Material.
We also had to find a location. We approached several area galleries and colleges inquiring about using their location, and eventually we were contacted by Linda Holderbaum, director of the Art Center of Battle Creek, with an offer to host our event.
How many are expected to participate in the event?
We anticipate about fifty artists will submit work for this event. And we are expecting approximately a hundred people at the reception.
Who will be judging the art?
The juror for the show will be Ryan Davis Flathau, director of the DeVries Gallery and professor of photography at Kellogg Community College in Battle Creek.
What are the details of the event?
This show will be on display at the Art Center from October 1 through October 28. The opening reception for the artists will be on Sunday, October 1, from 2–5 p.m. This is when the awards will be given out. This event is free and open to the public, and we encourage everyone to attend.
Artists may submit up to two works to the juror via email by Sunday, August 27, at firstname.lastname@example.org. There is no submission fee, but selected works will have a $20 registration fee for each work. The same procedure is followed for children’s work; no submission fee, but there will be a $10 registration fee.
What do you hope attendees learn or take away from the event?
We see this event as a potential opportunity to engage attendees who may not be associated with any particular church. This also provides them with the opportunity to come into contact with artists and the works of faith they portrayed through art. People also get to meet artists whose faith is so important to them that they created a visual expression of it for others to be inspired by as well.
Check out more information about this event by visiting the Facebook page, Artistic Expressions of Faith.