Kerry Jackson, a visual artist, ministers to the arts community in Atlanta as a Mission Service Corps missionary and church planter (www.drawingtotherock.com/msc). He’s also president of Drawing to the Rock Ministries, Inc. (www.drawingtotherock.com) and presents live worship art around the world.
LeAnne: Tell me about the gallery you are planning to open.
Kerry: God has given us the vision for a studio/gallery where thought-provoking art can be seen so that spiritual conversations can be generated. The gallery will also be a place for other Christian artists to share their acts of worship. It will be a gathering place for artists as well as art lovers. It will be a great place to build relationships and community. We will have shows and receptions. We will have art classes, creativity seminars, and Bible studies. This will lead to a new church start.
LM: What are you doing right now to reach out to artists?
KJ: Right now we're just trying meet them and find out where they are. Our desire is to volunteer and serve them, to help them be successful. We are immersing ourselves in the arts community by participating in guilds, associations, and clubs. We are volunteers at many of the art venues in Atlanta. We are reaching out to all creative people—not only visual artists, but actors, set designers, dancers, photographers, poets, musicians, etc, as well as those who profess not to have artistic talent but simply love art. We're praying that they will not only see us as colleagues, but as friends. We have to gain their trust before they will listen to us regarding spiritual matters. As we are blessed to help people find the Lord, we will help these new believers begin their discipleship by involving them in a local church.
LM: How are you being received by them?
KJ: So far so good. Our volunteer efforts seem to be very much appreciated. Once they begin to trust us, they are interested in hearing about our church planting efforts. When they learn I'm a visual artist, they want to see my work. Once they see it, spiritual conversations soon begin.
LM: Is there anything else you'd like to say about Christians in the arts?
KJ: Everywhere I go I'm introduced to many "artists" who tell me that they never really thought about using their talent for God. There has been such a disconnect with the Church and the arts that they don't see themselves worthy of being a "minister." My prayer is that through our small efforts, we can inspire a few people to reconnect with God and the Church.
On Monday: a photographer