“Lately, I’ve been thinking about Jesus in the manner of how he is all consuming.” Or, it was something in this vein the artist Melissa Beck articulated during my recent visit to her Pratt studio. Evidence of this statement filled my eyes as I perused one of her utensil pieces: a horizontal band of silver-plated forks happily glued to the wall by thick cake frosting. I was ready to partake in order to taste and see how good God is.
As a new fan of this emerging artist there is one thing I must herald about Melissa’s work: It is not just a cerebral exercise, as most of contemporary art is these days, for it jogs our embodied vision utilizing touch, smell, and taste. Her art is a holistic experience and through her use of food and household objects she explores ideas of consumption along with its tension between abundance and scarcity. This is exemplified by one of her pieces entitled “Drawering Room.” Does the collection of empty drawers hint at hoarding or are they waiting to be filled? These themes have already been explored by CFW guest speakers such as O. David Taylor and Andy Crouch who remind us that in God’s infinite kingdom to gain means we must give away.
Take in God through the arts!