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Sunday, October 26, 2008

Art Closing


Today Martha's Gallery Show closed. The gallery director invited the four area churches (M-4) to attend a closing lecture by Martha. About 25 folks (mostly MCC members and friends) showed up and Martha gave a wonderful talk about the show's theme: perspectives on paradise and on the techniques she uses for printmaking. Over lunch at an area restaurant, Martha commented on how strange it was to be given the privilege of doing a "closing" lecture. Often artists give "opening" talks to explain different aspects and dimensions of a show. Now after being hung and up for a month, the show comes apart today and tomorrow. Martha talked about the personal poignancy of being able to see all this work in one place, never to be hung together in the same room again. Some of her prints have been sold and will go to the homes and offices of the buyers. Others will go off to galleries around the country. She was not sad, but sensed the push into the next chapter of her art life, which is well underway in her studio. I think it was a brilliant idea to have a show closing as well as a show opening, bookending art's beginnings and endings.
How would I give a closing lecture/sermon if I knew this was the last time we would be all together in one place? What is the significance of these people in this place at this time? Some will move, others will die, others will come back. What is the next chapter in a church's life after a Sunday of worship together. Do we sense God's moving and developing among us? Are there new areas to pursue? Or do we just plan to do it all over again next week? The same people doing the same things saying the same words?

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