Mission & Values

The whole of creation belongs to the Lord and believers are commanded and called to take part in stewarding towards the fullness of all of it. This flourishing requires a holistic vision and necessitates Christian makers like you to understand and carry out this mission.

Our Mission

The Maker Institute of Studio Art and Theology develops Gospel-gripped, theologically minded, adept culture makers who faithfully seek to glorify Christ in all things.

Our Vision

Our vision is to see Christians who are visual artists, designers, and makers, deeply rooted in the local Church, make art with excellence across all spheres of influence. These makers will not be marked by a particular style or mode of making; instead, they will be marked by their excellent theological knowledge, increasing artistic know-how, and impactful presence in a world hungry for life, all under the Lordship of Christ. They will be disciples who love Christ and their neighbors as themselves, keenly through their makerly production, and people who can proclaim, teach and advance Christ’s Kingdom with faithful humility, love, mercy, grace, and truth.

Our Vision image

We believe the fullness of a maker comes forth when the heart, head, and hands are working together in unison. Therefore, our approach includes sound theological training, robust professional and studio practicum, and applied spiritual formation.

01. Heart

Discerning one’s calling as a maker is often tricky, but of critical importance. The heart of a Christian is new upon salvation; a new heart comes with new desires and giftings to match. The confounding pressure for art to serve artists as a functional identity idol has had damaging effects on Christians in the arts. Makers must find clarity regarding their desires so that we can bring Christ glory and love neighbors well instead of being frustrated as we try to force making art in ways that are not according to our calling or the identity Christ has richly provided us.

02. Head

Whether in one’s devotions, academic-theological studies, Bible reading, cultural anthropology, or practically in the studio, makers must steward the life of their minds well. Abraham Kuyper famously stated, “There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry, ‘Mine!’” The rule and reign of Jesus affirm that the quandary between sacred and secular is no longer a core problem that Christian makers must contend with constantly. That said, it follows that “All of Christ for all of life,” entails ongoing theological development. All of life and creation are sacred, including vocation and calling in the arts. How we think concerning God, art, and design must be tended to and cultivated. As artists and makers, we must not opt-out of lifelong learning.

03. Hands

The incarnation of Christ, with His grace-filled, sin-atoning work and forgiveness on the cross, coupled with the gift of new creation demonstrated by His resurrection, has manifold implications for our work as artists and designers. Firstly, it means the physical world can be worked with and made much of with our hands and that God cares deeply about physicality and the quality of what we make. Secondly, Christian makers must spend more time learning to make with excellence by demanding more from themselves regarding relevant skills and know-how. Thirdly, knowledge of the physical world and its effects is paramount. Christians should look to what Christ has made so that they might learn to employ such effects in ways that seek human flourishing and follow after the artistic and design patterns found in God’s good creation.

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