Latex on 3/4″ wood
4 panels, each 4′ x 8′
First Presbyterian Church
I am honored to have been asked by the Beautification Committee of First Presbyterian Church to create a series of paintings for the serving area of the church’s fellowship hall. This space, utilitarian in appearance, is in function a place of great warmth and hospitality. Several hundred people pass through it each week to receive meals prepared especially for them. Dozens of volunteers and staff prepare, serve, and clean for countless hours each week to provide for every person who comes through the doors, members and visitors alike. I was asked to produce pictures that would reflect the generosity of the shared community meals and of the hard work of volunteers and staff in the space.
Because people move through the serving area, the pictures are designed to create an atmosphere through which we pass, rather than to be contemplated for an extended length of time. They are intended to enhance the meaning that already exists in that place.
Nonetheless, they do have a meaning. Layers of red and gold build densely textured surfaces in these four paintings. There is a movement between them, currents passing through the paintings and linking them to one another. Different as they each are, they relate to one another through the space, communicating through patterns of light, color, line and texture.
These are pictures of the abundant life God gives us together. The paintings reflect the outpouring of love and care by those who serve in this place. Their hospitality, from the plentifulness of food to the kindness of their spirit, reflects the outpouring of God’s care for each of us. It is in sharing these gifts with every one we encounter that our life together thrives.
I am grateful for the opportunity to reflect a small part of the vast warmth and kindness of those who make this place a part of God’s abundant, beloved community.