A place where you can belong -
Space 2 Call Home.
Creativity is a curious thing.
Many people would not define
themselves as ‘creative’, as they
don’t see themselves fitting into
popular concepts of a creative
person. And yet, as humans made
in the image of the great Creator, creativity is a natural part of who we were made to be. Within faith communities, creativity also has something of a peculiar place. It is valued in expressions like music, where it has been part of the fabric of gathered worship for centuries. More recently, other performance arts are slowly gaining greater inclusion - dance, drama and the like.
But what of the creative who loves to sculpt? Write poetry? Construct beautiful pieces from textiles? What about the photographer, the sound mixer, the graphic designer? These skills are also pathways of expression, and of worship. They can be used to edify and inspire others. Those who wield them are also creative artists and an invaluable part of the multifaceted Kingdom of God. While many faith communities are starting to tap into these areas, it is often from a distance (Googling for images or photos) or reserved for special occasions like Easter and Christmas.
What would it look like if there was a place for any and all creative people to gather regularly, to share how they experience God’s presence through their artistry? From this question, the idea of a “creatives collective” began to take shape.
Space 2 Call Home began after a conversation with colleagues, one of whom was a local Brisbane officer blessed with a great corps facility (at that time not heavily used). We discussed a possible open mic night for local youth, a recording or performance space for hip hop/rappers and other similar options. This was exciting, yet as we chatted we found ourselves asking, “What about all kinds of artists?” The crazy idea of ‘grown up show and tell’ emerged - an opportunity to share many kinds of creativity with others. The simple parameters quickly took shape - a relaxed, family friendly evening with coffee and snacks; time to show and tell and time to chat and chill; any and every kind of creative or performance art welcome from artists of all ages.
From the first gathering in June 2018, it was clear that this concept resonated with many creatives. “I’ve found other people who love to do what I do!” has been a frequent response. Seeing a wide variety of creative expressions has been eye-opening. Meeting others who work through similar challenges, wrestle with the same disciplines and pursue similar visions has been inspirational. And it’s been, quite simply, a whole lot of fun!
The artistry presented has included a wide variety of styles, forms and techniques:
visual arts (painting, drawing, photography, mixed media, wood carving, leadlighting),
written and spoken arts (poetry, rap, spoken word, songwriting, prose, storytelling),
musical arts (vocal, instrumental, live, recorded, soundtracked),
textile arts (quilting, embroidery, mixed media, wearable art, knitting, crochet)
And that’s not an exhaustive list.
After a few local gatherings, a brain trust for ongoing planning was established. One early challenge was a common one; getting many people in one place at the same time, especially when some have small children, or limited transport options. The ingenuity of the Brain Trust came up with a random idea: to have more than one local gathering, and connect together online via a video chat group. The local gatherings provided the personal connection and relationship building to continue while expanding the collective to a wider circle of artists. It also offered a great opportunity for those outside the immediate urban area to join the fun.