Art Needs No Justification

Art Needs No Justification “Artists need no justification. God called them, gave them talents. We cannot go without them.” So declared H. R. Rookmaaker in his well-known essay, “Art Needs No Justification”. Artists are the ones to create the poems, the songs, the images, the metaphors, the forms that can both express what has been gained in insight, wisdom and direction, and pass them on to others in a positive and incisive way. His arguments are still sound today, and for all the reasons that Rookmaaker set forth art as a discipline and a calling needs no justification for its place in the Christian community.

“Bad art with good religion makes a mockery of art; good art with bad religion makes a mockery of religion” (C & A, p. 56). “Ultimately, the sacred is what art is all about. Every culture has expressed its most profound motivations in art. The modern world tends to disregard this, to its great loss” (C & A p.56).

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“There have been many modern artists who have produced out of a sense of the sacred or spiritual, but these works have often treated by the art world as aberrations. We shape our art, and it shapes us. So here we are, one hundred and fifty years after the beginning of modern art, and we have shaped ourselves to what that art has become: secular, art for its own sake, and art for the museums” (C & A p. 56). Religion.