Polkinghorne on Art and Eschatology

“For many people, art provides the window through which they glimpse a sight of an everlasting reality underlying the flux of the changing world. Richard Bauckham has discussed the way in which artistic experience ‘enables us to indwell the moment that otherwise escapes us’, developing his theme in terms of an extensive analysis of insights derived from considering Virginia Woold’s To the Lighthouse and Claude Monet’s famous sequence of paintings of the lily pond at Giverny. Bauckham quotes a remark of John Berger that ‘ all the languages of art have been developed as an attempt to transform the instantaneous into the permanent’. For Bauckham, representative art, operating in this way, affords us an image of how the divine act of new creation will transform the old creation into its everlasting destiny. Once again we encounter the human intuition that there is the hope of a reality beyond transience.”

-John Polkinghorne, The God of Hope and the End of the World, 34.

About mjbutterworth

Coffee. Books. Bicycles.
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