The Art of Vengeance

Shalom, Makoto Fujimara

“Art goes to where words cannot reach.”
James Romaine

This reminded me something Odysseas Elytis said so long ago (note: “Wanting to be Heard“):

The lack of synchronicity between nature and man caused the lack of synchronicity between body and soul.  When the nightingale isn’t heard, the Molotov cocktail is.

What do Molotov cocktails say? I was reminded of something in “Do we get what we deserve” when Charlie Hebdo was attacked in January 2015.

I don’t think people groups [we might consider] our enemy “deserve” disrespectful satire, any more than I think Hebdo’s satirical provocations deserved this terrorist response. But for the intolerant, terror is the only utensil in their toolkit that reaches places argument cannot; surely terrorism is a hammer continually looking for a nail.

I wondered about how “for the intolerant, terror is the only utensil in their toolkit that reaches places argument cannot.”  Depending how you look at it, is this the same as: “art goes to where words cannot reach”?

The Art of Self-Destruction

In Romaine’s interview with artist Erica Downer, she comments on her sculptured works of art:

My work often has wires or other sharp things that protrude like weapons that keep the viewer at a certain distance… I think that speaks to how we are self-destructive… I am working on some pieces that resemble maces or clubs. But the way the pieces are constructed, they hurt the user as much as the they hurt the person being clubbed. Furthermore, using these clubs will destroy them as well because, while they are sharp, they are also delicate. They are much like us in that way.

From “Objects of Grace: Conversations on Creativity and Faith,” by James Romaine.

“Art goes to where words cannot reach.”

Artist Albert Pedulla observed the way art has a way of penetrating our culture that arguments d0 not; he says,

I think what is interesting about mystery, about the spiritual, is that it penetrates your rational defences. It disarms us.

Art as Prayer

Japanese artist, Makoto Fujimara was the director of the “International Arts Movement” out of New York when he was working on a project called “Art as Prayer.” Having been near the Twin Towers on the day of 9-11, he comments,

What we saw were two “art forms.” The terrorists’ “art” of vengeance contrasted with the heroes of 9-11 whose “art” was their sacrifice… These are two clear opposing ways of creating.

What Art are you creating?

May your creations enjoy the impulse of the Creator:

Who creates and recreates with artistic flare and beauty.

Who restores and replenishes with care and kindness.

Who protects with a fierce love and a mighty motive.

May your art be prayer, and may your prayer be something beautiful for God.

About R.H. (Rusty) Foerger

As I enter the third third of life, I am becoming aware of the role of elders today “to enlarge spiritual vision, being devoted to prayer, living in the face of death, as a living curriculum of the Christian life” (Dr. James M. Houston). I am a life long and life wide learner who seeks to: *decipher the enigma of our worth *rescue from the agony of prayerlessness *integrate spiritual friendship.
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