The Art Factory Ministry

I have not been to Europe since 1957. We left Germany when I was six weeks old. Needless to say, I remember nothing about the land of my birth.

Army Base. Stuttgart.

Mama never had much good to say about her time in Germany. Mostly because my birth – four days of labor and face first, how else? – had been traumatic for her. (Somedays it seemed like everything about me was traumatic for her.)

Tim has been to Europe. He’s seen Paris, The Louvre. Belgium, Brussels, NATO Headquarters.

But this summer marks our 35th anniversary (Yay for working hard on lasting love), and our friends Rick and Mary Beth Holladay have invited us to join them at The Art Factory.

Located in Kandern, Germany, The Art Factory is a ministry for restoration. (I’m certainly in need of some, you?)

Rick is the guy who introduced me to Tim years ago at Oregon State University. Tim and Rick were both transfer students from Judson Baptist College and good friends. Rick graduated with an Art degree from OSU and went into full-time ministry with Campus Crusade for Christ. He served all over Europe for many, many years.

Then he got this idea for the Art Factory: A place where professional Artists from around the world are invited to come spend up to a month, offering seminars, workshops or just a chance to r&r and work on their own projects.

Creating is a lot like labor.

It’s exhausting.

Sometimes it’s painful.

The thing created is not only a reflection of the one creating. It’s the embodiment of the creator. A giving away of oneself in a very real way.

Part of creating anything requires a certain nesting period. A time of being very still. A time to ponder.

The Art Factory allows creators the opportunity to sit, to ponder, to work alongside other artists, to feast alongside them, to discuss the work that is so often done in absolute isolation, apart from community of any sort.

So, God willing and the creek don’t rise ( to borrow another of Mama’s favorites) Tim and I will be heading to The Art Factory this summer.

And you? What do you have planned for 2013?





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  • Wow! What a great ministry!

  • AFRoger

    In 2000, we had the joy of spending a week at the Gruenewald Guild just outside Leavenworth,WA. I came away with one raku pot and a few little writings. Gruenewald is a much smaller and humbler place than the Art Factory, of course; but the same things happen. One of my favorite memories of the week was the time we spent each morning in our “matins”–which consisted of the day’s installment of Director Richard Kaemmerer’s lecture and slides on a segment of art history. We were lucky enough to be there for a week on the Italian Renaissance. Art serves us not by answering all the questions. Instead, it’s a way for us to make sure the questions don’t get left off the table. Unforgettable, as was that glorious experience of raku firing. Enjoy!

    • Roger, never heard of it. Good to know. I like what Rick and MaryBeth say about a lot of people who would never grace the doors of a church will visit an art factory.

  • Samantha Clough

    This sounds so fantastic! I am so happy for you! And now I have to come up with something cool to do this summer too…hmmmm….

  • Jen

    Your little sister has been my spiritual momma for many years! I believe we may have even slumbered at your home on one of many trips to Beth Moore faith weekends, it was that trip with my one of my babies in my arms I gave my life to The Lord. I came across your writing and your blog following the news on your mom. Such a beautiful way to honor your Momma through your words written of moments remembered. I hope your trip to this artistry sanctuary blesses you and restores you, if only in a little way.

    • Jen: My little sister has been a spiritual momma to dozens of women and hundreds of children. She is a gift to me. Thank you for your kind words.