Theo Jansen’s Beach Creatures

This is a fascinating artist.

A New Yorker video, uploaded on Sep 21, 2011

This week in the magazine, Ian Frazier writes about Theo Jansen, a Dutch artist who makes kinetic sculptures that walk on the beach called Strandbeests. In this video, with footage by the filmmaker Alexander Schlichter, Frazier discusses these wind-powered sculptures and how they fit into the tradition of Dutch landscapes.

Continue reading “Theo Jansen’s Beach Creatures”

A New Exhibition of Mariana Sain-Morar at Artbeat on Main Street in LA

exhibition Mariana Sain Morar - Artbeat on Main Street

Saturday September 21st, 5:00pm till 7:30 pm

Address of the gallery:

330 Main Street

Vista, California, 92084

* * *

The role of art in a totalitarian country, as Romania was in my youth, is different than it is in the free world.  Under a totalitarian regime the art is either forced to surpass its esthetical function, to engage in the fight against the Lie, exposing it, or to be a simple tool used by those regimes to distort the reality.  In those circumstances the truth could not be openly spoken, therefore it took unusual forms, which were hard to grasp at first glance.

The majority of my work done in Romania does not easily reveal itself to the hurried viewer. These paintings have hidden connotations, although always a message based on general human values, which could not be freely expressed in a totalitarian regime. Scenes of everyday life acquire expressionist and dramatic nuances, the chromatic palette usually being based on deep, grave tones, seldom touched by light tones, used not to solve the mystery but to accentuate it. Still there is hope; there is the power to trust in a better and just world. Continue reading “A New Exhibition of Mariana Sain-Morar at Artbeat on Main Street in LA”

Interviu CBEE despre Ionatan Pirosca – UPDATE

Puteti gasi AICI interviul despre poetul Ionatan Pirosca pe care l-am acordat ieri Iuliei Tuns pentru Radio CBEE.

Redau mai jos transcrierea editata a acestui interviu.

* * *

Iulia Tuns in dialog cu Danut Manastireanu despre Ionatan Piroșca – 20 mai 2013

De câtă sare e nevoie pentru a da gust sufletului? Se împrăștie și-n jurul lui? Și dacă se împrăștie, se și risipește? Și dacă se risipește se și alterează? Există grade în sărărie date de sărăcie? În Jurnalul de pe Strada Sărăriei (Salt Street Journal) figurează doi bulgări de sare: unul a rămas gust, celălalt are și formă. Unul e Ionatan, celălalt e Dănuț Mănăstireanu.

D.M. Mă onorează apropierea. Cred că este totuși acolo o discrepanță de valoare. Ionatan este foarte sus pe scara valorii și prin ceea ce el a făcut în modul lui unic pentru spațiul evanghelic românesc. Nu cred că mă pot compara cu el, dar, repet, apropierea mă onorează.

I.T. Câte urme ați presărat în umbletul împreună?

D.M. Nu foarte multe. Ne-am întâlnit de vreo două-trei ori în persoană. Am comunicat însă mai des prin e-mail, prin intermediul internetului, dar în persoană ne-am întâlnit rareori. Continue reading “Interviu CBEE despre Ionatan Pirosca – UPDATE”

Ionatan Pirosca – Sa-i fie poezia usoara


De 20 mai, ne amintim cu recunostinta catre Dumnezeu, si cu admiratie, pentru harul lui poetic, de prietenul Ionatan Pirosca, cel plecat prea devreme dintre noi.

In aceasta seara Radioul CBEE din Oradea a transmis un interviul pe care l-am acordat recent Iuliei Tuns despre poezia lui Ionatan. Sper sa va pot pune curind la dispozitie inregistrarea si transcrierea acesteia.

Pina atunci, asa cum se cuvine de ziua Poetului, o Poezie.

Al Tău bal

Cum nu se miră umbra mea de mine,
Oricât, în soare cald, m-aş răsuci,
Aşa nu-mi sunt privirile-Ţi străine,
Aşa mi-eşti drag şi tot aşa mă ştii. Continue reading “Ionatan Pirosca – Sa-i fie poezia usoara”

I Killed My Mother, by Andras Visky, on Stage in London – UPDATE

I Killed My Mother

I Killed My Mother
by Andras Visky

On from 05 Mar 2013 till 10 Mar 2013
Rosemary Branch

Genre(s): New Writing, Drama

Tickets: £10.00 – £12.00 – Full price tickets £12, concessions £10

About: I Killed My Mother

Summer Dialogues Productions presents
by Andras Visky

Translated by Ailisha O’Sullivan and Agnes Lehockzy
Directed by Natalia Gleason

First performed in Chicago, and then at experimental theatre La Mama, New York, this UK premiere is translated, directed and performed by London based Eastern-European artists, and written by Andras Visky, one of the most original voices of contemporary continental theatre.

Inspired by the true story of a Romanian orphan born as a result of Ceausecu’s disastrous anti contraception policy 20 years ago, Visky has developed the idea of metaphoric orphanhood binding and dividing everyone. In his play institutional neglect is transformed into a gift enabling the main character to become self reliant. The writer himself will be present for post show Q and A at some performances. Continue reading “I Killed My Mother, by Andras Visky, on Stage in London – UPDATE”

Atelier Plus – Expozitia ‘Copil’

Expozitia de arta contemporana ‘Copil’, organizata de grupul Atelier Plus,  a avut loc in perioada 18 decembrie 2012 – 6 ianuarie 2013 la Centrul de cultura urbana Turnul Croitorilor din Cluj Napoca.

Atelier Plus,  este un grup de artisti plastici crestini din Cluj. Iata cum se prezinta ei pe situl web al grupului:

Suntem un grup de prieteni.
Ne bucuram sa fim impreuna,
organizam – tabere de lucru, intalniri saptamanale, calatorii de studiu, happeninguri, expozitii.
Ne anima arta si ceva in plus.
Atelierul nostru are usa rotativa: intra cine doreste, iese cine doreste.
Nu suntem institutionalizati, ci, pur si simplu impletim impreuna vietile,
plusul si arta.

Scara – o metafora plastica

Sunt sigur ca sculptorul Liviu Mocan are ceva de-a face cu acest hapenning, asa cum are si Ioan Scararul.

Maria Lactans – A Rare Christmas Ikon

Maria lactans ikon

Did you know that ‘the oldest known image of the Virgin Mary is from a third-century fresco in a Roman catacomb that shows the infant Jesus suckling at her exposed breast’?

The religious section of Huffington Post has published yesterday a very interesting article about the reasons for the rarity of the ikon of Mary, the mother of Jesus breast-feeding him. I think this is one of the effects of the constant Docetic  temptation in the Christian Church – the overshadowing of the human nature of Jesus by his divine nature.

The starting point is a book by Margaret Miles,  A Complex Delight: The Secularization of the Breast, 1350-1750 that traces the disappearance of the image of the breast-feeding Mary after the Renaissance.

Here some excerpts from this text worth reading:

At its heartwarming core, Christmas is the story of a birth: the tender relationship between a new mother and her newborn child.

Indeed, that maternal bond between the Virgin Mary and the baby Jesus has resonated so deeply across the centuries that depicting the blessed intimacy of the first Noel has become an integral part of the Christmas industry.

Yet all the familiar scenes associated with the holy family today — creches and church pageants, postage stamps and holiday cards — are also missing an obvious element of the mother-child connection that modern Christians are apparently happy to do without: a breast-feeding infant. Continue reading “Maria Lactans – A Rare Christmas Ikon”

Beauty In An Ugly Time – On Rouault and Chagall


Georges Rouault                                                 Marc Chagall

Books and Culture, the cultural critique magazine of Christianity Today has just published a really beautiful article of David Lyle Jeffrey, on two of my favourite painters, Georges Rouault and Marc Chagall. Here are a few excerpts from the first part of this article:

…The recent exhibition at Baylor University of Georges Rouault’s Miserere et Guerre series and Marc Chagall’s Bibleseries (both made possible through a gracious loan of collections by the Mark Foster Family Foundation) offered an opportunity to reflect on an aspect of modernity so obtrusive that no artist concerned for truth can entirely overlook it: the monstrous fact of human suffering on such a scale.

Rouault’s etchings, which have been called the most powerful single work of Christian art in the 20th century, and Chagall’s etchings of the covenant narratives, often regarded as the high watermark of 20th-century etching overall, were made in war-ravaged France. Rouault did his work from 1914-27; Chagall’s work was begun in 1931-39 and only completed between 1952 and 1956. Anchoring the work of both artists, literally and figuratively, are reflections on the meaning of the Crucifixion of the Suffering Servant for modern man. Continue reading “Beauty In An Ugly Time – On Rouault and Chagall”

Porn – A New Play by Andras Visky on Stage in Chicago

My friend Andras Visky does it again. His new play called, provocatively, Porn, is going to be on stage in Chicago two days from now.

I wish him all the best.

Anneke Kaai, a Dutch Christian Artist

Anneke Kaai

I have received these days, from my friend, and soon to be my former boss, Rienk van Velzen, as a good bye gift, an album with the paintings of Anneke Kaai, a Dutch Christian artist of whom, I have to admit, I have not heard until now. The book is called The Psalms: An Artist’s Impression. The book also came with a very warm letter, which, of course, is too personal to publish here.

Here is the presentation of the book on the Amazon site:

In every generation, the book of Psalms has inspired artists and musicians, and comforted and thrilled ordinary readers. These ancient poems seem to be timeless–with amazing insight and accuracy they express the wide range of human emotions often experienced in secret, of hurts and baffling doubts, of deep joys and soaring hope.This book combines the talents of two artists, from different continents and cultural contexts, who express their personal encounters with the words of the Psalms. Using vibrant acrylics on Plexiglas, the Dutch artist Anneke Kaai applies paintbrush and collage techniques to give “body” to her experience of the Psalms; the verses that inspired her paintings appear alongside, taken from The Message by Eugene Peterson. Peterson’s paraphrase, widely embraced by readers in his home country (United States) and around the world, is a moving manifestation of the cutting reality, emotional intensity and colloquial vibrancy of the ancient Hebrew poetry. Continue reading “Anneke Kaai, a Dutch Christian Artist”

Christine Valters Paintner – Abbey of the Arts

Christine Valters Paintner

Today I have found out about a very interesting web site owned by a virtual monastic community oriented towards contemplative spirituality and the arts, called Abbey of the Arts. You may find out HERE a few things about Christine Valters Paintner, the ‘abbess’ of this monastic community. Christine also has a blog, which really worth exploring (I have added it to my list).

At the centre of this monastic community you can find a Monk Manifesto.

Here are the seven rules outlined in this document: Continue reading “Christine Valters Paintner – Abbey of the Arts”

Ioan Nemtoi – un Brincusi al sticlei

Ioan Nemtoi, unul dintre cei mai cunoscuti artisti sticlari din Romania, este cu 10 ani mai tinar decit mine, In ziua de 14 ianuarie artistul a implinit 47 de ani.

In copilarie, cind mergeam la bunici, in satul Drislea, comuna Trusesti, din judetul Botosani, eram vecini, dar nu ne-am cunoscut niciodata foarte bine. I-am urmarit insa intotdeauna cu interes cariera artistica. Continue reading “Ioan Nemtoi – un Brincusi al sticlei”

Blessed Christmas! – Craciun binecuvintat!

Advent in Art – Third Sunday

Corregio, Nativity

Matthew 1:18-25, Luke 2: 1-7 [The Message]
The birth of Jesus took place like this. His mother, Mary, was engaged to be married to Joseph. Before they came to the marriage bed, Joseph discovered she was pregnant. (It was by the Holy Spirit, but he didn’t know that.) Joseph, chagrined but noble, determined to take care of things quietly so Mary would not be disgraced.

While he was trying to figure a way out, he had a dream. God’s angel spoke in the dream: “Joseph, son of David, don’t hesitate to get married. Mary’s pregnancy is Spirit-conceived. God’s Holy Spirit has made her pregnant. She will bring a son to birth, and when she does, you, Joseph, will name him Jesus – ‘God saves’ – because he will save his people from their sins.” Continue reading “Advent in Art – Third Sunday”

Hugh Mann – Haiku I Knew You

If the child you were
could meet and know you today,
what would that child say?

(Source, HERE)

Hugh Mann – Peace Poetry

I have received today through email, out of the blue, an unusual, even fascinating message, that I am going to share with you. The author, Hugh Mann, is an American  doctor and a poet. Here is his message. I cannot agree more with it.

* * *

Religions are based on scripture, which is mostly poetry. So it only makes sense that religious conflict must be resolved through poetry, and not through politics, negotiation, or war. I propose that all religious conflicts be redefined poetically, so that they can be resolved without bloodshed, winners, or losers. So let’s sharpen our pencils, not our swords; send missives, not missiles; and apply our minds to metaphor, simile, rhyme, meter, and prosody, but not pomposity, animosity, ferocity, atrocity, or monstrosity.

Best regards,
Hugh Mann

* * *

In a separate message, I will share with you soon one of his poems.

Prehistoric Pre-school Cave Drawings

Recent archeological studies done at the University of Cambridge show that children as young as five participated in sort of pre-school cave drawing activities. Here is the news article on the university website:

A conference on the Archaeology of Childhood taking place this weekend at the University of Cambridge will reveal the latest research into art made by young children in one of the most famous prehistoric decorated caves in France – the complex of caverns at Rouffignac also known as the Cave of a Hundred Mammoths.

Cambridge archaeologist Jess Cooney will explain how meticulous research, using methodology tailor-made for the task, has made it possible to identify both the age and gender of the children who made the simple art form known as finger flutings around 13,000 years ago during the hunter gatherer period. Continue reading “Prehistoric Pre-school Cave Drawings”


This little project was built at Freswick Castle in the North of Scotland, a place where Christian artists come together to talk, work and encourage each other.

Thanks to my friend Monique Sliedrecht, a Dutch Christian artist who lived at Freswick, for this link.

Mike Riddell and ‘The Insatiable Moon’

Back in the day, Mike Riddell was a regular speaker at Greenbelt. The behatted Mike, a one-time Baptist pastor, worked the crowds in 1994, 1997, 2000 and 2003. His book Godzone was something of a cult favourite in edgy circles. He was the back cover writer for Third Way magazine, and a regular visitor to the UK on speaking tours.

So whatever happened to him? Where is he now? While some might suspect he washed up on a park bench clutching a bottle of sherry and muttering about God, Mike reports that’s only partly true. The truth is much worse. He’s become a Catholic, and got mixed up in making films.

Those with tendencies to schadenfreude can see the depravity to which he’s sunk by attending the Greenbelt 2011 screening of feature film The Insatiable Moon. Mike wrote and helped to produce the adaptation of his novel that began his journey down the slippery slope of moral destitution. Continue reading “Mike Riddell and ‘The Insatiable Moon’”

Liv Tyler Says ‘The Ledge’ Is Not Anti-Christian, Christian News

Liv Tyler Says ‘The Ledge’ Is Not Anti-Christian, Christian News.

This is a very interesting article on a movie that will surely make waves among Evangelicals, for its portrayal of the pathologies of fundamentalism.

I have no idea why are Christians so obsessed and aggressive towards those works of art that describe them, be it rightly or unjustly, in a negative manner. Christ warned us that when we suffer for our own stupidity, we get when we deserve and when we suffer unjustly, we get what he himself got from those who opposed him.

I was able to finally able to watch on my way back from the States another movie that many Christians considered an offense: The Golden Compass. I was wondering why is that and, to be fair, I still do. To my surprise, I was in quasi- agreement with most of the criticism in the film towards the Magisterium (a symbol of the power of the institutional religion).

Again, I am afraid that this kind of reaction is an expression of our inability to accept that death of Christendom.

Daca vrei sa fii rege

(versuri, Benone Burtescu; recita, Marcel Iures)

Shadows of the Divine

Thanks to Christian artist Monique Sliedrecht for this announcement. The website of the event can be found HERE.

Whoever took the son – A story for Good Friday

Marc Chagall – White Crucifixion (Source, HERE)

A wealthy industrialist and his son loved to collect great works of art.  They would often sit together to discuss and appreciate the paintings in their collection, which ranged from Raphael to Rembrandt, and from Monet to Matisse.

But when war broke out, the son went off to fight in a distant land.  He was very courageous but died tragically in battle while rescuing a wounded comrade.  The father was notified and grieved deeply for his only son. Continue reading “Whoever took the son – A story for Good Friday”

Google Art Project

Continue reading “Google Art Project”

Seara de cristal

Continue reading “Seara de cristal”

Voicu Bjan – Glamour, mon amour

Foto: Voicu Bojan

Amicul Voicu Bojan a publicat recent un text excelent sub titlul de mai sus. Il recomand cu bucurie celor care citesc si altceva decit texte pe teme religioase (exista un soi de oamni carora daca le furi cumva aceasta dimensiune, nu mai ramin cu nimic; la ei ma refer). Continue reading “Voicu Bjan – Glamour, mon amour”

Ever wondered ‘Why Are Christian Movies So Bad?’

I did, but do not have a definitive answer. Here is Mark Moring’s common sense response:

In a reasonable rant over at Relevant magazine, Scott Nehring asks the question, “Why Are Christian Movies So Bad?”

The brief essay, excerpted from his book, You Are What You See: Watching Movies Through a Christian Lens is long on stating the problem in terms we’ve heard before: Christian movies are “intellectually vacant,” “disconnected from reality,” and are known for “substandard production values, stilted dialogue and childish plots.” Continue reading “Ever wondered ‘Why Are Christian Movies So Bad?’”

Chemare/Decalog. Un gigant în jurul lumii

O sculptură gigantică realizată de artistul clujean Liviu Mocan străbate lumea de peste un an şi jumătate. Opera de artă a fost văzută până acum de sute de mii de oameni. Lucrarea este de fapt un grup statutar format din 10 lucrări, înalte de aproape cinci metri. Intitulată Chemare/Decalog, opera vorbeşte despre cele zece porunci. Continue reading “Chemare/Decalog. Un gigant în jurul lumii”

Decalogue in Grand Rapids – to be or not to be… awarded

dear friends,

as you know, “the decalogue” sculpture was exhibited in cluj napoca, romania; geneva, switzerland; bellflower, california and now, here, in grand rapids, michigan

in all of these places my desire was that the good news will be spread through its beauty and concept
with that hope, followed by great efforts of many brothers and sisters involved, knowing that, at art prize a huge number of people is going to interact with it

but here, getting in the waves of the competition, my heart was tempted by the huge prize ($250.000) offered by the organisers Continue reading “Decalogue in Grand Rapids – to be or not to be… awarded”