37. What They Never Taught You About Modern Art & Modernism - Jonathan Anderson


Hello, creatives, and welcome back to the podcast. Today we’re talking about modernism and the philosophical and theological questions posed by modern art. Joining us today is Jonathan Anderson, an artist, art critic, and associate professor of art at Biola University.

We all know that modern art gets a bad rap in the Catholic world. When we compare a traditional icon to a contemporary abstract painting or traditional chant to some modern musical compositions, we find the stuff made less than about 500 years ago a little difficult to appreciate. But instead of calling for a wholesale return to tradition, we need to find a way to understand and access modern art and participate in the conversation it inspires.

Jonathan is all about the theological implications and underpinnings of modern art. He recently co-authored the book Modern Art and the Life of a Culture: The Religious Impulses of Modernism. Our conversation today gets into some of the serious philosophical and theological implications of modernism, and Jonathan provides a great context for understanding contemporary art in the modernist movement. He tells us the best way to start our own personal quest to appreciate modern art. And perhaps most importantly, he gives a definition of art that we need to all think about and discuss.  

So strap yourselves in and get your thinking caps on.

Before we get started, Catholic Creatives just launched its first major collaboration! Our team of over 100 Catholic artists and filmmakers have begun work on a groundbreaking film made by the millennial generation, for the millennial generation. The film is called 8beats, and it is an anthology film exploring the collision of the Beatitudes into our human experience. We believe these challenging stories provoke a re-examination of happiness, suffering, and the meaning of life. We’re looking for people to join us in generating stories that matter through the power of film. Go check out the project on Indiegogo, and like us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Please share our Indiegogo link to help spread the word. By supporting this project, you will be putting a world-changing idea into motion.

As always, create something awesome this week, and enjoy the podcast.