Expressing the inexpressible

There are times when we have our words fail us, and we find ourselves using metaphor to express that which we can’t express. We talked a bit about that use of metaphor on the retreat I attended in Tucson last week. Science as well as theology often strays into metaphorical language. We seek to explain the things which cannot be easily explained. It’s not unlike the task of a poet I suppose. And so at our retreat, focusing on the fusion of Science and Theology we read a lot of poetry. I imagine if we’d held the retreat here at the Cathedral, we would have used the artwork presently on exhibit.

We have an art gallery here in our Cathedral. It shows different exhibits each month. Some of the exhibits are great. So the exhibits are not so great, at least in my opinion.

But this month’s exhibit is probably my favorite of the six years I’ve been here. It’s a sculpture and painting exhibit that focuses on mathematical forms commonly seen in nature. The exhibition reminds me that there are times when we have our words fail us, and we find ourselves using metaphor to express that which we can’t express.

We talked a bit about that use of metaphor on the retreat I attended in Tucson last week. Science as well as theology often strays into metaphorical language. We seek to explain the things which cannot be easily explained. It’s not unlike the task of a poet I suppose. And so at our retreat, focusing on the fusion of Science and Theology we read a lot of poetry. I imagine if we’d held the retreat here at the Cathedral, we would have used the artwork presently on exhibit.

I’m including some pictures of the objects. If you’re ever here in Phoenix during the month of March I hope you’ll stop by and see them in person. We’re open all day Monday through Friday, 9 AM until 4 PM.

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Particulars of the exhibit:

“Flower, Leaf & Metal”
an exhibition of art by
Annie Waters, Catherine Ruane and Kevin Caron
narrating quiet observations of nature’s ephemeral cycles through line, form and color

More info here.

Author: Nick Knisely

Episcopal bishop, dad, astronomer, erstwhile dancer...

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