Category Archives: civablog

items in this category appear on the civa blog page

When Things Fall Apart

by Christine Lee Smith This summer, after over a year of planning, working, preparing, thinking, naming and finally installing my MFA thesis body of work, it dawned on me what this body of work is ultimately about. I stood in the gallery, mask on, stunned into silence.  In January 2020 I finished photographing my 4×5… Continue Reading

The Decisive Moment

by Randall J. VanderMey, PhD I am no lover of paraphernalia—tripods, gimbels, lenses, filters, light reflectors—so if it were not for the iPhone, I probably would not be a photographer at all. I would continue to be a writer-poet with an arrogant sense that words were most truly evocative, whereas images were merely documentary or… Continue Reading

In the Balance: Molten Images and Tipping Points

by Karen L. Mulder, PhD Something held “in the balance” suggests an outcome in some jeopardy, with a precarious tipping point, poised to fall. Americans have lived in a 49% to 51% society for decades, often negotiating out of a wearying polarity between reactive rhetoric and responsive dialogue. The great statue controversy of our time… Continue Reading

One Longing, Two Pathways

by Scott Crosby We continue this blog theme of Balance and Harmony in a time that seems to laugh at such quaintness.  But with a moment of reflection, this time is also full of reminders of the need for looking toward such disciplines, even as we delve deep into the pursuit of our days and… Continue Reading

Balance and Harmony

By Margaret Bustard As we work on the next issue of SEEN with the topic of Balance and Harmony, it is hard to not notice that the world around us is anything but balanced or harmonious. Through the uncertainty of COVID-19, the cultural moment that is the Black Lives Matter movement, and even the fight… Continue Reading

It Takes Time to Learn to See

By Joseph Tenney Note: The photos that accompany this essay are part of the traveling exhibition Time and Again. As a pastor, I love having an art gallery in our church.  I have found it to be deeply formational for myself and our people because artwork stirs us to adopt valuable willingness to inquire, to… Continue Reading

An Eye That Sees

By Edith López Thinking about the vision for my life, my calling, and what I should be engaged in (apart from my dear husband), I started remembering some art projects and desiring more. Art brought me a generous answer. I say “brought” because art worked as the “chasqui” did in The Inca empire. It brought… Continue Reading

Collective Art During COVID-19

By Pamela Alderman During the recent pandemic, when the Michigan government and several other states gave a Shelter in Place order, many people faced the new struggle of being alone behind closed doors. Suddenly, I started hearing some of my friends say, “I’m lonely,” for the first time. This feeling loomed just below the surface… Continue Reading

Far From Home and Alone

By Asher Imtiaz Editor’s note: This essay is reposted by permission of the author and the original host, The Living Church. All images featured are courtesy of Asher Imtiaz. Shortly after I arrived in the United States, I came across some statistics about international students that remain worth sharing. Approximately 40 percent of these students never… Continue Reading