Hope Soars in charity exhibition

Birds
My series ‘Hope Soars’ will be on show at Paintworks from Tues 14th February. Originally 10 prints made for Hope08 at St Martin in the Bull Ring, Birmingham, these prints have been shown at various venues since then, including Neston URC (the Wirral), Cairns Road Baptist Church (Bristol) and Christ Church Clifton (Bristol). 6 of the prints will make an appearance, including the 4 posters below, and all of them are for sale with 100% of the proceeds going to the charity Mercy in Action. The text below accompanies the pieces shown:

These 4 prints are a celebration of what the Dictionary of Biblical Imagery calls ‘the four coordinates of hope’: faith, joy, perseverance and endurance. Hope is more than just a vaguely positive feeling about the future – it is an attitude towards the present that transforms character and releases us to live without fear. It is a strong mindset, an ‘anchor for the soul, firm and secure’ (Hebrews 6:19).

This sense of secure hope is referred to in the Bible by analogy to the protective and healing power of wings: ‘Those who hope in the Lord… will soar on wings like eagles,’ ‘He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge,’ ‘for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings’ (Isaiah 40:31, Psalm 91:4, Malachi 4:2). It is the wings in these images that are all in some way being transformed.

While the wings themselves are described with line, the use of colour and layers of other photographic detail suggests a growing vitality that has the power to take us beyond the one-dimensionality of the everyday. There is a sense of freedom in flight that is emotionally uplifting and which, for the Christian, reflects the joy of the Holy Spirit.

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