each year for lent, for the last several years now, i have added a discipline to my routine, rather than give up chocolate or soda. i am still giving something up: it's called free time. the discipline that i've added is the act of reflecting on the text and proclamation for each sunday of lent, and responding to it creatively by making a collage for each week.
above you can see the results of this year's effort. there are 8 collages because i technically began with ash wednesday, and then continued with each of the 7 sundays of lent. from top left they are:
1. "ash wednesday: with dirty hands"
2. lent 1: connected
3. lent 2: self
4. lent 3: work
5. lent 4: temptation
6. lent 5: money
7: lent 6: struggle
8: lent 8: hope
you can see that there is a stylistic theme woven throughout, and that is the use of the same size canvas, covered first with wrinkled tissue paper, then painted a different color, and ripped to allow the color of the tissue paper to show through at some spots. i did this to convey the idea of brokenness, of torn flesh. you'll also see shading on each one, moving from darkness in the upper left corner of each collage, to light in the lower right corner. i wanted each of the collages to show that glimmer of hope, that movement towards light and redemption.
each of the collages is based on a story in the gospel of mark, and was part of our lenten sermon series which was called "journey to hope." each one represents some of the obstacles and difficulties we encounter on that journey, and, of course, it ends with hope itself, with a stone that has been rolled away. whatever obstacles have blocked out the light; whichever stones have impeded your progress and kept you locked in fear have been rolled away. hope is here.