Category: Art and Spirituality


Expressive Arts

Neither of my parents were religious people, but they did instill in me an aesthetic appreciation through regular visits to museums and cathedrals and listening to great classical music.  My aesthetic sense was cultivated long before my spiritual sense, of course, now I realize that my spirituality was being shaped through my love of beauty.  So when I did make a formal commitment to a faith tradition, the two things that captivated me were the aesthetic and justice dimensions.  While working at a Catholic high school in Sacramento as a religion teacher and campus minister in 1994, part of my

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Clever Hands

My husband and I took a little pilgrimage up to Vancouver earlier this week to visit the Vancouver Art Gallery, where they have an exhibit called Raven Travelling: Two Centuries of Haida Art.  When we moved up here to Seattle three years ago we quickly fell in love with Pacific Northwest Native American (or First Nations, as they are called in Canada) art.  The Haida are especially extraordinary artists as this exhibit demonstrates.  The Haida people live on an archipelago in Northwest British Columbia called Haida Gwaii (Or Queen Charlotte Islands as Canada still officially calls them), a place I

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Art-Making as Spiritual Practice

So much of the work I do is making a safe space for folks to remember the delights of creative expression and to explore and play with paint, markers, collage, poetry, movement, words, and sound. I always introduce the practice of art-making in the context of prayer, hoping to convince others that God can really be found in the playful and experimental places of our lives. I often need to remind people that in the Judeo-Christian tradition we actually believe we were created in the image of a Creator God. This molding of humans as creative beings imparts a profound

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Creating Space

There is no getting around it. Creativity requires spaciousness. In a culture that demands we hurry up and do, produce, move faster and higher up the ladder, become breathless, worship speed and efficiency, finding space can be a real challenge. And yet, for me, here is where the spiritual life and the creative life converge—in the profound need and longing to make space to listen to the divine presence who, as the mystics tell us, dwells within us. Space to notice the stirrings of our souls, and to honor the newness budding there. In fact, we don’t just “find space,”

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About the Sacred Art of Living Blog

WELCOME! This is a new Blog hosted by Creating Space and Sacred Center and created/moderated by Christine Valters Paintner. It was created as a place for conversation around the intersection and integration of spirituality, creativity, and the arts. The regular practice of art-making helps us to cultivate creative ways of being in the world. Ultimately, our greatest creative act is the living of our daily lives. Creativity is about making space and listening deeply to our lives and the world around us, seeing beneath the surface of things to the depth dimension of the world, opening ourselves to the newness

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