Abstract Painter Reflects on the Gospel

March 31, 2011

Abstract Painter Reflects on the Gospel The 2010-2011 University Speaker Series concluded Tuesday at University Campus with a moving address by abstract painter Makoto Fujimura on “Faith and Art.”

Fujimura was commissioned by Crossway Publishing to create five major illuminated paintings, along with related smaller works, for a new edition of The Four Holy Gospels. Fujimura recalled that he had only 18 months to complete the work for the oversize (11-inch by 17-inch) volume.

A devout Christian, he began his work by contemplating the passage, “Jesus wept.” That lead him to the Biblical story of Lazarus, and the role of faith. Intellect and emotion are both represented in the story of a transformation, he said. This contemplation inspired him to paint “Charis-Kairos” (The Tears of Christ) for the first illustration of the volume.

Fujimura also discussed the way abstract art is often viewed. Many people think they don’t like it, he said. But then he tells them that fireworks, classical music, and jazz are all forms of abstract art.