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Christmas Playlist 2014: Monophonic

So much Christmas music is an overproduced mess. This year for our annual Christmas mix we decided to cleanse the palate by finding a set of songs at the other end of the production spectrum. We’ve got buzzing, droning, hissing and popping.  We’ve got yowling

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“We See These Things:” Drawing with Dale Leys

My drawing teacher, Dale Leys, has recently been the subject of a forty-year, three-gallery retrospective exhibit. And while I couldn’t go to Kentucky to see the shows, I was thrilled to see that Kentucky’s public television channel, KET, aired a 30-minute documentary about his work

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The Life of Jesus in Paintings at the Getty

The Getty Center in Los Angeles is not really the best place to go if you want to see Christian art. Except for the remarkable collection of illuminated manuscripts, the Getty’s collection just isn’t built around the themes and images of the Christian visual tradition

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Dante, Illustrated by Boccaccio

I did not know this existed until today. I knew that Giovanni Boccaccio (1313–75), author of the Decameron, admired Dante Alighieri (1265–1321). I knew Boccaccio had written a short Life of Dante, and I even knew that Boccaccio had studied Dante’s work intensely and lectured on

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What You Can Learn from Calvin and Hobbes about the Message and the Medium

Anybody who has a message that they care about communicating should pay attention to the great lesson taught by Calvin and Hobbes: The lesson is that not every message can be communicated in every medium. Yes, I mean Bill Watterson’s comic strip about the tiger

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Hours of the Compassion of God

A set of images from the Book of Hours of Catherine of Cleves, a Dutch Gothic illuminated manuscript from about 1440 (see below for more information on the source). In a series of nine pages, the artist gives us the legend of the cross, which

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Biola’s Jesus Mural: How “The Word” Dwells Among Us

One of the first things you’ll notice if you visit Biola University’s campus is our Jesus Mural, “The Word.” It’s iconic for us, our evangelical counterpart to Notre Dame’s “Touchdown Jesus.” It’s huge–27 feet tall–and all the more significant as it stands in the middle

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Christmas Playlist 2013: Instrumental Good Cheer

Instrumental Christmas:  The Sanders household just wasn’t in the mood for the all-out onslaught of the familiar Christmas music in the early days of this December, so we put together a set of wordless wonders, and we sought out as many unfamiliar tunes as possible.

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God Went Bowling

There’s a little song called God Went Bowling by a band called the Swirling Eddies. It was on their 1994 album Zoom Daddy, and it features an oompah beat driven by accordion. Over it all is the snide vocal of Terry Scott Taylor, the songwriter

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Dig Here Said the Angel

“I sell records worldwide now that I’ve died,” boasts the singer in one of the tracks on the new Daniel Amos album, Dig Here Said the Angel.  The character is a musician, obviously, but postmortem, and somehow (As a ghost? In a dream?) he’s assuring

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We’re Not Lost by The Show Ponies

Album Review by Janelle and Phillip Aijian   “We’re not lost, we just don’t know where to go.” The lyric from the Show Ponies’ sophomore effort invokes not only the album title, but also one of its major themes: humor and humility in the midst

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Spiders, Comics, and Jonathan Edwards

Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758) is widely recognized as the greatest theologian America has yet produced. He wrote epochal books and preached sermons that still echo in our cultural memory from the Great Awakening. One of the least important things he ever wrote is a fun bit