Some years ago, we bought a vehicle that I dubbed the Artmobile. To see what happened to it, you can read this post: https://www.thepastoralartist.com/blog/artmobile
At the time, we were immersed in elder care for Mike’s parents. The car was great to transport my mother-in-law before her stroke, but it really didn’t live up to artsy the name since I wasn’t able to create much art during that time. I called it the Artmobile more as a statement of faith that I would once again do art professionally and that I’d be transporting paintings to shows and exhibits. Or transporting art materials to my studio or to workshops. That didn’t happen at that time. After its demise, I’ve been driving Dad’s former car - an aging Buick.
The car was old and it was beige. A friend of mine (in her 80s, mind you) called it an old lady car. But it was serviceable. This past year, though, the front end started to go. While like to get every last mile out of a vehicle, there comes a point where you need to recognize the time has come to retire it. We started researching cars and I took a couple of test drives. After some hemming and hawing, we finally settled on one.
Behold. The Artmobile part deux.
More to come, I'm sure.
On January 6, the day that celebrates Epiphany, I had a lovely Zoom meeting with a group of artists across the country. I’d just gotten off the call, intending to start a new blog post when my husband called my attention to the news that was unfolding. We watched live coverage of rioters breaking windows and assaulting some of the capital police officers while searching for lawmakers to harm.
Epiphany means revelation, and a lot was revealed about the state of our nation that day. The idea of keeping up on blog posts suddenly seemed absurd to me as my social media was filled with posts of people attempting to rebrand the rioters as ‘patriots’ and the rewrite the narrative of that day. But although I live in the midwest, I know people who live in D.C. and I’ve heard some of their experiences of that day. This was lawlessness, pure and simple.
For weeks I despaired of the state of our country and of the Church - since many who claim to be followers of Christ were advocating violence to create a government in their own image. Social media became toxic for me so I took a couple of months off Facebook and used that time for prayer and reflection. Jesus built the Church on a firm foundation. Through the centuries there have been many efforts to corrupt the message, to gain power, and to further personal agendas. But there has always remained a remnant of believers who kept their eyes on Christ and persevered. The true Church - those who submit their lives to the example and teachings of Christ - will prevail.
And remembering that, I turn once again to what my role is in the Kingdom of God. My call is to be a creator, a maker, an artist. I’m called to reflect God’s beauty and character by the works of my hands. Not painting sermons, but reflecting His mystery and glory in all I say, write, paint, and do.
With that in mind, I’ll be re-working this website.
Donna Kemper put aside her art career to care for a mother she hadn't seen in over a decade. For seven years she followed her mother's journey into dementia, caring for her and putting forgiveness into action.