Art

Here are four artists with whom I have worked theologically, and a fifth whose name I don't know, but whom I appreciate greatly.

In 1991, when I was acting Principal of St Andrew's College, Kabare, Kenya, we commissioned Benson Ndaka, a Kamba carver based at the Benedictine Monastery at Tigoni, near Limuru, Kenya, to carve six mahogany panels for the doors of our new Library and Chapel and one carving for the porch illustrating African Christian Theology.

In 2003, when I was vicar of St Mary Islington, London, we commissioned with a couple in the parish, Karl Scott and Julie Lewis, Jonathan Clarke, a sculptor based at Bury St Edmunds, to create an aluminium lectern, 'Christ Blessing the Children'. My wife and I had bought Jonathan's sculpture, 'The Eighth Hour' in 2000. He gave on loan to St Mary's his 'Ascension'. In 2014, when I was Bishop of Sherborne, I encouraged Queen Elizabeth School, Wimborne, Dorset, to commission him to make a sculpture, 'Sign', which picked up the meandering River Stour and meandering signature of Queen Elizabeth 1. The film of its official opening, in 2015, is here.

From 2003 to 2020, my wife, Alison, and I commissioned Silvia Dimitrova to paint  seven paintings of Women in the Bible. I then wrote seven poems expounding them. They, and photos of the paintings, are included in my Nourishing Connections: Collected Poems (Canterbury Press, 2020).

From 2018 to 2022, Tristan Latchford, Director of Music at St Chad's College, Durham and later a PhD student at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA, wrote seven anthems on my seven poems on Silvia's seven paintings and formed a choir and recording company, Harmonicham, to record them on CD. The world premiere concert was on 14 June 2023 at St Stephen, Walbrook, London. The concert programme is here and the film of the concert, by Fugue State Films, is here. A Church Times podcast with Silvia, Tristan and me, is here.

In 2008, when I was vicar of St Mary Islington, I encouraged the church to buy a beautifully carved tree trunk by an unknown Zimbabwean carver. Victor de Waal, a former Dean of Canterbury, found the sculpture. 

 


A random selection - click on a picture to explore.

A carving of the parable of the sower from St Andrew's College, Kabare, Kenya by Benson Ndaka Carving of the heavenly banquet from St Andrew's College, Kabare, Kenya, by Benson Ndaka 'Ascension' sculpture by Jonathan Clarke St Mary's Islington, Photo Barry Dunnage The Eighth Hour sculpture, by Jonathan Clarke, photo in St Mary's Islington vicarage 2002 by Rogan MacDonald Painting by Silvia Dimitrova - Magdalene - bsed on John 20.11-18. World premiere: A Celebration of Women in the Bible Painting by Silvia Dimitrova - Esther - based on the whole book of Esther, especially Esther 4.5-17. 'Ascension' sculpture by Jonathan Clarke St Mary's Islington, Photo Barry Dunnage