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Saturday, 24 June 2017

Windows on the world (350)

Brussels, 2016


Sixpence None The Richer - We Have Forgotten.

Art awakening humanity

Art awakening humanity is a conference organised by St Stephen Walbrook in partnership with Alexander de Cadenet and Watkins Mind Body Spirit Magazine that will explore the relationship between art and the spiritual dimension by taking words spoken by Eckhart Tolle in an interview with Mind Body Spirit Magazine as inspiration:

“Beauty arises when something more essential or deeper, something that underlies the world of sense perception shines through. It is what I call the ‘underlying Intelligence’ that is the organizing principle behind the world of form, a hidden harmony, as it were”.

”True art can play an important part in the awakening of humanity.”

The conference will be held in the context of an exhibition at St Stephen Walbrook of Alexander de Cadenet’s ‘Life-Burgers’, works which question the vanity of worldly existence and explores the “cultural hero system” proposed by philosopher Ernest Becker.

  • Jonathan Evens - Modern art & spirituality – a brief survey
  • David Cranswick - The role of integrity in traditional craft practices and the ancient cosmology of the pigments, metals and planets
  • Edward Lucie-Smith - An agnostic’s view of art & spirituality
  • Theresa Roberts‘Jamaican Spiritual’: spirituality in Jamaican art
  • Jonathan KearneyArt, theology & the digital: creating new understandings
  • Mark DeanConcerning the esoteric in art
  • Jonathan Koestlé-Cate - Art & Church: ecclesiastical encounters with contemporary art
  • Alexander de Cadenet - The Origin and the purpose of the Awakened Artists Group – a new group exploring the relationship between art and the spiritual dimension
To register for this stimulating conference, click here.


Gungor - Beautiful Things.

3 Mothers: Latest ArtWay Visual Meditation

For my latest Visual Meditation for ArtWay I reflect on icons depicting contemporary saints or church members, focusing on 3 Mothers by Regan O'Callaghan:

"O'Callaghan ‘believes in representing the sainthood of all believers by painting living Christians with the same care and honour that you would reserve for painting a saint.’ ...

In doing so he is consciously building on the tradition of iconography, having studied the technique of icon writing for 6 years, specifically focusing on the Greek and Russian traditions. The ‘Sainthood of all Believers’ series is therefore a contemporary response to an ancient tradition. Religious icons belong in the realm of what he calls a ministry of encouragement, whether this is experienced in their writing or the praying before them. It is this spirit that is of interest to him."


John Tavener - Fragments Of A Prayer.

Les Colombes artist Michael Pendry in Artlyst interview

Les Colombes: The White Doves, an Art for Peace Project by Michael Pendry is at St Martin-in-the-Fields until Monday 3 July.

Michael is a multimedia artist, who was born in Stuttgart in 1974, draws on his experience as a stage designer in the theatrical installations he regularly creates for cultural institutions. Having created installations for an increasing number of churches and having stated that he is driven by a desire to get through to those people for whom visiting cultural facilities is rather unusual, I took the opportunity provided by the installation of his ‘Les Colombes – The White Doves’ at St Martin-in-the-Fields, to explore these motivations more fully with the artist in an interview which has been published by Artlyst.

In the interview I note that ‘Les Colombes’ has become an installation which is touring the world – installed in Munich and Jerusalem prior to London and travelling on to San Francisco and Berlin. Michael thinks ‘Les Colombes’ “is easy to understand, has a simple and, most of all, a very emotional message which is so relevant in our times... the doves in their unity stand for such a fundamental human right. The time has come to announce and to stand up for this – for the right to peace and freedom! May the flock of doves grow, from place to place, from country to country, and across all borders.”'


PLastic Ono Band - Give Peace A Chance.

Friday, 23 June 2017

Spiritual Jazz now and then

Colin Marshall writes that 'Jazz has inspired a great many things, and a great many things have inspired jazz, and more than a few of the music's masters have found their aspiration by looking — or listening — to the divine.'

He quotes Andy Beta who noted that: 'This culminated in John Coltrane's masterpiece A Love Supreme, which opened the gates for other jazz players seeking the transcendent, using everything from "the sacred sound of the Southern Baptist church in all its ecstatic shouts and yells" to "enlightenment from Southeastern Asian esoteric practices like transcendental meditation and yoga."'

'It goes without saying that you can't talk about spiritual jazz without talking about John Coltrane. Nor can you ignore the distinctive music and theology of Herman Poole Blount, better known as Sun Ra, composer, bandleader, music therapist, Afrofuturist, and teacher of a course called "The Black Man in the Cosmos." NTS' expansive mix offers work from both of them and other familiar artists like Alice Coltrane, Earth, Wind & Fire, Herbie Hancock, Gil Scott-Heron, Ornette Coleman, and many more (including players from as far away from the birthplace of jazz as Japan) who, whether or not you've heard of them before, can take you to places you've never been before.'

Steve Huey adds that 'Albert Ayler conjured otherworldly visions of the spiritual realm with a gospel-derived fervor.' Jaimie Dougherty expands by saying: 'It’s no secret that Ayler’s ecstatic style of play was informed by his Christian spirituality (however unorthodox it may have later become), and many critics in the ’60s compared Ayler’s style to speaking in tongues. Ayler’s style is expansive—he finds power in fiery arpeggios running across tonal boundaries, notes drawn to time-stretching length, and pushing the timbre of the saxophone into strange new territory. Similarly, Peacock and Murray explore on Spiritual Unity the limits of their instruments, and the limits of rhythm and time. It’s at these limits that they manage to suggest both eternity and a kind of time-rootedness or temporal contingency.'

Spiritual Jazz continues to inspire the likes of Denys Baptiste, Martyn Halsall and Dwight Trible:

'The Late Trane is the powerful and commanding new album from British saxophonist Denys Baptiste, a giant of the UK jazz scene. Reimagining and reworking ten carefully chosen composition from John Coltrane’s late music (from 1963 – 1967) with a fresh and modern new interpretation, The Late Trane perfectly balances Denys Baptiste’s unique artistic vision with the visceral emotions and cosmic references that encompasses Coltrane’s late music.

The later works of John Coltrane, preserved in both studio and enigmatic live recordings were some of the most emotional and spiritually charged music of the 20th Century. Written at a time of tumultuous change in America and the world: the civil rights and anti racism movement, the Vietnam war, the peace movement and space exploration inspired a great flow of creativity of which Coltrane was at the heart. As Denys explains: ‘John Coltrane continues to be one of my most important influences and his late period has always intrigued me and has stimulated my work over many years. To play this music, with these incredible musicians alongside me is hugely inspiring’.

During the mid to late 60’s, John Coltrane’s music was inspired as much by the spiritual as the cosmic and a series of ground-breaking studio albums marked the last phase of his musical odyssey. Crescent, Ascension, Interstellar Space, Meditations, Om and Sun Ship all exemplified this period of explosive creative growth, where the boundaries of jazz were shifted forever.'

'Manchester based trumpeter, composer, arranger and producer Matthew Halsall has carved out a unique niche for himself as both a band-leader and producer delving deeply into the worlds of spiritual jazz and string-laden soul. His latest project finds him playing with and producing the legendary LA jazz singer Dwight Trible, who first came to international renown with his 2005 Ninja Tune release Love Is the Answer. Trible, whose deeply soulful voice has seen him compared to Leon Thomas and Andy Bey, has worked with the likes of Pharoah Sanders, Horace Tapscott and Kamasi Washington (he sings lead vocals on the Epic) and brings a deep-rooted soulfulness to everything that he sings. Halsall and Trible first met at the Joy of Jazz Festival in South Africa back in 2015, when a chance encounter backstage led to Trible sitting in with The Gondwana Orchestra for an impromptu reading of the classic Pharoah Sanders and Leon Thomas anthem 'The Creator Has A Master Plan', and a lasting friendship and respect for each others music was born.

The relationship started to bear fruit in July 16, Trible was performing at the North Sea Jazz Festival and Halsall invited him to guest with him at a memorable show at the, newly re-opened, Jazz Café in London. A recording session at 80 Hertz studios in Manchester followed, providing two tracks that feature here: The timeless standard I Love Paris, and the traditional spiritual Deep River, featuring Halsall regulars pianist Taz Modi, bassist Gavin Barras and drummer Luke Flowers. Inspired by what he heard Halsall offered to produce a Dwight Trible album for his Gondwana Records imprint. Together they selected some of their favourite songs and in November last year they went into Fish Factory Studios, London with new recruit Jon Scott taking the drum chair. They recorded an impassioned reading of Donny Hathaway and Leroy Hutson's classic Tryin' Times (a song as sadly relevant today as it was in 1970), a vibrant, soulful version of the Nina Simone smash Feeling Good and a beautiful take on the timeless Bacharach classic What The World Needs Now Is Love featuring harpist Rachael Gladwin. They also laid down two spiritual jazz masterpieces, a powerful re-working of Dorothy Ashby's Heaven and Hell (from the legendary The Rubiyat of Dorothy Ashby album) and a heartfelt version of Coltrane's beautiful ballad Dear Lord, with lyrics by Trible. Lyrics that have an extra poignancy after they received praise from none other than Alice Coltrane, who heard Trible perform his version of the song shortly before her passing.'


The Bobby West Trio & Dwight Trible - In The Beginning, God.

Welcome to the June HeartEdge Mailer ...

Welcome to the June HeartEdge Mailer ...

At HeartEdge our passion is growing Kingdom communities - via congregations, culture and commercial activity and acts of compassion. Join HeartEdge - become a member here

This month - Benjamin Blower on art and the grotesque and a clip of Broderick Greer on Mary’s rebel anthem. Links to Catriona Robertson talking about extremism and terrorism and Sam Wells and Jackie Kay about faith communities. Also, Luke Bretherton writes on citizenship . Plus lots of fundraising ideas and hear about Soup. Also HeartEdge news and Sam on building assets or addressing deficits.
Enjoy? Tell your friends and like our Facebook page for more!
Keep in touch: Like us on Facebook and Twitter @HeartEdge

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Mark Heard - Strong Hand Of Love.

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Start:Stop - Show us how to be the answer to our prayers.

Bible reading

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise the words of prophets, but test everything; hold fast to what is good; abstain from every form of evil.

May the God of peace himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Thessalonians 5. 16 – 23)


Last week an Ordinand at Westcott House tweeted a photo of beds set out in St John’s Notting Hill for use by the survivors of the Grenfell Tower fire. His tweet said: ‘When people say, in the aftermath of tragedy, prayers are useless, remind them they inspire acts like this. Those who pray are those helping practically as well - not mutually exclusive. St John's Notting Hill with St Clement's Church took a leading role in helping the misplaced and traumatised following the tragic fire.

This tweet is a reminder of the reasons why the Bible encourages us to pray without ceasing and to give thanks in all circumstances. Our prayers are not simply about God in action, they are also prompts for us to take action. Many of the prayers we pray can be answered quickly and with amazing results if we become better listeners to the voice of the Holy Spirit. If we can change our mindset as we pray, we can be used of God in mighty ways to be His agents of transformation.

Kim Butts is someone who has explained how this amazing reality became part of her prayer life. She was in a small group of women studying the Bible together and learning to pray. One young woman had three small boys and a husband who was working in another state to support them. He only made it home for a weekend every few months. There was very little money, but Bertie was always joyful. Her prayer one evening (they met in her home, as she couldn’t afford childcare) was for her husband to be able to come home for Christmas. The group prayed for the Lord’s provision and for this husband and father to be able to come home in time to celebrate with his family.

As they were praying Kim had an overwhelming sense that she was supposed to do something for this family. She shared her thoughts with another friend and they decided that between them they could help in the situation. First, they left Bertie, some money anonymously on the seat of her car. Bertie tearfully told our small group during their next meeting about how she had been worried about not having enough grocery money for the week. The envelope had contained the amount she needed.

Then when Bertie wanted to visit her husband for a weekend in case he was unable to come home over Christmas, they offered to take turns staying at her house to take care of the boys. While she was gone, they took the boys to get a Christmas tree. After it was set up, the five of them started making decorations for the tree and singing Christmas carols. The boys had a wonderful time and were so excited for their mother to come home. They all prayed for their father to be able to come home too. Imagine the surprised faces when both of their parents came through the door! The family had a wonderful reunion and a very special Christmas!

This is a very simple example, and it is easy to say, "We don’t need to pray before we help people." Very true, but we are often in a hurry and may miss opportunities as God puts them in our paths. Prayer helps us recognise those opportunities. Being the answer to the prayers of others is one way to be used by God. Being the answer to our own prayers is an astonishingly powerful privilege.


Rescuing God, you left the safety and beauty of heaven to come and save us. You gave your very life to deliver us from death forever, and to bring us into fullness of life. We thank you for all who take risks and make sacrifices for others in their daily work, and especially for the men and women who work in our emergency services. Help us to honour and appreciate our police, fire-service and paramedics and to bless them through our interactions with them, our support of those known to us personally, and our prayers for them. We pray for all the residents of Grenfell Tower. We pray particularly for those who have suffered injury, those who have died, and all the residents who have are left without a home today, and the entire community that has been affected. Our prayers are with all who have been affected by this fire, especially the victims, their families and friends, and all who are still worried about their loved ones who are unaccounted for. As we pray, show us how to be the answer to our prayers.

God of truth and hope, in Christ you walk with your children through the valley of the shadow of death. Visit today all who know the panic and terror and trauma and grief of sudden, violent, ruthless attack, especially all who were victims of the attacks on Westminster Bridge, in Borough Market and at Finsbury Park Mosque. Bless those injured, bereaved, horrified, dismayed. Turn siege into renewal, fury into wisdom, doubt into gentleness and tension into trust, that as your people experience a Babel of tumult you may transform their chaos into a Pentecost of peace. As we pray, show us how to be the answer to our prayers.

God of mercy and judgement, in Christ you came among us as a vulnerable child and suffered a cruel and untimely death. In the face of terror you show us what we rightly love. Visit the people of Manchester today, in the midst of horror, and grief, and injury and dismay. Comfort the maimed and the bereaved. Strengthen the hands of those who bring healing, hope, and kindness in the face of agony and brutality. Teach each one of us to hold dear what can so suddenly be snatched away, to cherish what can so intimately be threatened, and to uphold what some are seeking to destroy. Make this time of terror and loss a moment of renewal in what we most deeply believe and most firmly maintain, that though we fear we may more truly love, and though we despair we may more profoundly know you, whose kingdom we seek, now and forever. As we pray, show us how to be the answer to our prayers.


Praying without ceasing, giving thanks in all circumstances, being the answer to our own prayers. May all those blessings of God almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be among you and remain with you always. Amen.


Taize - O Lord, Hear My Prayer.

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

come, again: degree show 2 design - central saint martins

Degree Shows at Central Saint Martins are a collective cacophony of voices and creativity. Thanks to University of the Arts London Chaplain and Interfaith Advisor, Mark Dean, I was able to see that for myself this evening at the Private View for Degree Show 2 Design.

Crossing disciplines, Show Two spans from design and fashion to drama and cultural enterprise. Projects on show – whether provocation, performance or product – present a future in the making.

Courses featured in Show Two:
  • Culture and Enterprise programme: BA Culture, Criticism and Curation, MA Innovation Management
  • Drama and Performance programme: BA Performance Design and Practice, MA Performance Design and Practice, MA Character Animation
  • Fashion programme: BA Fashion, BA Fashion Communication, Graduate Diploma in Fashion
  • Graphic Communication Design programme: BA Graphic Design, MA Communication Design
  • Jewellery and Textiles programme: BA Jewellery Design, BA Textile Design, MA Material Futures
  • Product, Ceramic and Industrial Design programme: BA Ceramic Design, BA Product Design, MA Design: (Ceramics); MA Design: (Furniture); MA Design: (Jewellery), MA Industrial Design
  • Spatial Practices programme: BA Architecture, MA Architecture, MA Narrative Environments

Pulp - Common People.

St Mary the Virgin, Banbury

I have enjoyed a HeartEdge visit today to the splendid late 18th Century church of St Mary the Virgin at the heart of Banbury. The church is of particular interest for several reasons, including its connection to St Stephen Walbrook.

As designed by the architect, Samuel Pepys Cockerill, the building was a perfect square with sides 90 feet long. It is thought to have been modelled on Sir Christopher Wren’s St. Stephen Walbrook, which, like this building, has a dome supported by twelve classical columns.

In 1873 the whole east end was reconstructed to the design of Sir Arthur Blomfield, All that remains of Blomfield's richly coloured decorative scheme are figures in the chancel which are painted in imitation mosaic In the dome of the apse, is depicted the Vision of the Throne of God from Revelation chapter 4: the rainbow, the four and twenty elders, the four living creatures, and the seven lamps symbolic of the Holy Spirit. Behind the High Altar are the figures of the Twelve Apostles with appropriate symbols of their calling or martyrdom. The stained glass is also of Blomfield’s time, the most striking windows being those at the eastern end of the nave above the galleries – by an unknown artist.

The church has a Lamp of Brotherhood brought from Monte Cassino in 1964, one of 84 throughout the world, and the first in this country. Jonathan Swift hints in the preface to the 1726 edition of Gulliver’s Travels that he had taken the name of Gulliver from tombstones in the Churchyard at Banbury. 

In 2002 the chancel was extended forward to create a stage, facilities for those with disabilities were added, emergency lighting and toilets were added and the church was redecorated. St. Mary’s is now both a place of worship and a resource to the community for performing arts. Since 2002 throygh LiveArts, St Mary’s has offered a performance and exhibition venue to a wide range of local, national and international artists, choirs and orchestras.

LiveArts at St Mary’s is a group of volunteers who, on behalf of the church supports, promotes and organises a programme of events, about 30 each year, both midweek and weekend. These include numerous local choral societies and orchestras (often supporting local charities) as well as well-known artists, Sir James Galway, Hayley Westenra, St Agnes Fountain, alongside the Birmingham Philharmonic Orchestra and the Black Dyke Brass Band.

The Beacon drop in Centre in the St Mary's Church Centre is a drop-in centre for people who are homeless, poorly housed or socially excludedincluding those with mental health or substance misuse problems. Referrals are made to longer term housing and connection floating support workers are available. The Beacon is a place where people can come to find a warm, accepting environment and friendly atmosphere.

Banbury - famous for its cakes, cross and the ‘Ride a Cock Horse’ nursery rhyme – is an ideal base for touring the Cotswolds, Shakespeare’s Stratford Upon Avon, Warwick and Oxford. Banbury retains much of its historic market town character, and was granted its market charter by Queen Mary 1 in 1554. The town has a modern shopping centre which blends in with the old shopping streets, where visitors can find a fine selection of pubs, cafes and restaurants.

Banbury Museum is home to a permanent collection of The Civil War, plush manufacturing, the Victorian market town, costume from the 17th century to the present day, Tooley’s Boatyard and the Oxford Canal, as well as an international temporary exhibitions programme, family fun events, talks, tours and fun for all.


Moonrakers - Waulkin' O'er The Fauld.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

CARAVAN: I AM at St Martin-in-the-Fields

I AM is a peacebuilding exhibition that premiered in Amman, Jordan under the patronage of Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah involving 31 of the Middle East's premier contemporary women artists that promotes and celebrates the many accomplishments of Middle Eastern women in shaping our world into a peaceful and harmonious one.

I AM will visually celebrate the rich, diverse and crucial contributions that women from the Middle East make to the enduring global quest for harmony and peace. In this way, the exhibition aims to challenge existing stereotypes and misconceptions about Middle Eastern women by showing how they dynamically and very significantly contribute to the fabric of local and global culture. I AM will showcase the insights and experiences of Middle Eastern women as they confront issues of culture, religion and social reality in a rapidly changing world both in the Middle East and West. This exhibition is an acknowledgement of how they continue to creatively evolve new narratives that uphold their rich heritage while embracing a future full of challenges.

I AM premiered at the National Gallery of Fine Arts in Amman, Jordan (3 May - 14 June) and will next be showcased at London's St. Martin in the Fields on Trafalgar Square for the months of July and August (2 July -20 August), followed by touring North America from the fall of 2017 through the end 2018, premiering in Washington, D.C. at the Katzen Arts Center of American University (September 5-October 22).

At each exhibition venue, a variety of events and programs will be planned to stimulate discussion, dialogue and education, promoting further understanding (talks, concerts, literary readings, film screenings, panels, forums, workshops, etc.).


Alabama Shakes - Don't Wanna Fight.

Exhibitions update: Image and identity

I've recently enjoyed seeing two exhibition about image and identity:

Grayson Perry: The Most Popular Art Exhibition Ever!: This summer Grayson Perry, one of the most astute commentators on contemporary society and culture, presents a major exhibition of new work at the Serpentine Galleries. The works touch on many themes including popularity and art, masculinity and the current cultural landscape.

Perry’s abiding interest in his audience informs his choice of universally human subjects. Working in a variety of traditional media such as ceramics, cast iron, bronze, printmaking and tapestry, Perry is best known for his ability to combine delicately crafted objects with scenes of contemporary life. His subject matter is drawn from his own childhood and life as a transvestite, as well as wider social issues ranging from class and politics to sex and religion.

The Most Popular Art Exhibition Ever!, tackles one of Perry’s central concerns: how contemporary art can best address a diverse cross section of society. Perry said: “I am in the communication business and I want to communicate to as wide an audience as possible. Nothing pleases me more than meeting someone at one of my exhibitions from what museum people call ‘a non-traditional background.’ The new works I am making all have ideas about popularity hovering around them. What kind of art do people like? What subjects? Why do people like going to art galleries these days? What is the relationship of traditional art to social media?”

A Channel 4 documentary Grayson Perry: Divided Britain followed Perry as he created a new work for the show: his attempt to capture the thoughts of a divided country a year after the EU referendum. Harnessing social media, Perry invited the British public to contribute ideas, images and phrases to cover the surface of two enormous new pots: one for the Brexiteers and one for the Remainers. He also visited the most pro-Brexit and pro-Remain parts of the country for the programme, which is available to watch on All4. 

Saatchi Gallery and Huawei have teamed up to present From Selfie to Self-Expression. This is the world’s first exhibition exploring the history of the selfie from the old masters to the present day, and celebrates the truly creative potential of a form of expression often derided for its inanity.

The show also highlights the emerging role of the mobile phone as an artistic medium for self-expression by commissioning ten exciting young British photographers to create new works using Huawei’s newest breakthrough dual lens smartphones co-engineered with Leica.

I'll also be going to see Art Out of the Bloodlands: A Century of Polish Artists in Britain at the Ben Uri Gallery from 28 June - 17 September 2017. This exhibition focuses on the contribution made by the largest migrant community to 20th/21st Century British Art, this exhibition highlights the work of Polish artists who have worked and continue to work in Britain. Featured artists include: Jankel Adler, Janina Baranowska, Marian Bohusz-Szyszko, Stanislaw Frenkiel, Feliks Topolski and Alfred Wolmark, complemented by contemporary practitioners working in London now. All but a handful of the featured works have been created in England – the new homeland - yet many retain symbols of Polish national identity, from Catholicism and the cavalry, to the dark forests and traditional embroidery.


Pink Floyd - Wish You Were Here.

St Matthew Bethnal Green: Commissioning young artists

Congratulations to Fung Lau and James Johnston, both priested today at St Matthew Bethnal Green.

In 1957 it was decided to rebuild St Matthew Bethnal Green and Antony Lewis was appointed architect. Work began in 1958 and the temporary church was demolished in 1960 and the present church was re-consecrated on 15 July 1961.

The enlightened vision of Antony Lewis included commissioning young artists and ensuring that their work was integral to the structure of the building. Thus the church now has Stations of the Cross by Don Potter, a staircase sculpture by Kim James, the Apostles Screen by Peter Snow and an altar by Robert Dawson. Dorothy Rendell painted the tester designed by Lewis himself (as were the light fittings and the font) and the murals in the Upper Chapel are by Barry Robinson. The glass panels are designed by Heather Child. (see Art in St Matthew's)

Apart from these major pieces St Matthew’s houses a legacy from many of the other bombed churches in the area which are no longer standing. The stained glass in the Back Chapel by Lawrence Lee incorporates windows from St Philip’s, Swanfield Street, the crucifix at the east end is from the temporary church, as is the statue of Our Lady of Peace and a number of the carved wooden furnishings.

The interchange between artists and the church continues. For some years, the church hall was home to two galleries - Paradise Row and T 1 + 2.

Artists that have either had work in or related to the church are Cornelia Parker, Wolf Von Leinkiewicz, Lucinda Rogers and Turner Prize winner Laure Prouvost.


Rhabanus Maurus - Veni Creator Spiritus, Mentes tuorum visita.

St Stephen Walbrook - Art videos

The website for St Stephen Walbrook has had additional videos added relating to the art exhibitions that have been held there and films that have been made there in recent years.

These videos can be found in the Gallery section of the website and feature work by Francis Bacon, Daniel Bourke, Terry Ffyffe, Michael Takeo Magruder, Kim Poor and Paul Raftery.


Genesis - Watcher Of The Skies.

We don’t know where we’re going

I've appreciated Gary Younge's recent reflections on the Election result in The Guardian (click here and here). The following quotes align with my reflections following the result:

The Brexit vote revealed a fundamental division within our nation and the Election result shows that we remain a divided nation and don't know how to address that reality - 'When Big Ben called time on Thursday night, we saw clear evidence of a political realignment that the media and the political establishment had dismissed with hostility, and now regarded with confusion. We saw a polity that has lost touch with its people; a political culture unmoored from the electorate, and a mainstream media that drifted along with it. The election did not create that dislocation; it was merely the clearest and least deniable manifestation of it so far. We are in new territory. And we don’t know where we’re going.'

Brexit unleashed a wave of self-centred isolationism which is not representative of the majority within our nation and the Election result indicated a corrective to this - 'During the EU referendum, much of what was wrong with Britain was blamed on foreigners – either the faceless bureaucrats in Brussels who took our money at the expense of the NHS, or immigrants, who, it was claimed, took our jobs and plundered our benefits. But this time round, there was no one else to blame. There was a concern in that room in Wembley that Britain had become too harsh and unforgiving. One woman said she thought things had swung too far the wrong way, and that it was time to “make things fairer”. Another agreed. “We need to show people we care about them,” she said.'

'For far too long, cynicism has been the dominant force in British electoral politics, willing failure at every turn. When they saw large, engaged crowds, the political class and its stenographers in the media dismissed them. They did not appeal to people’s better nature because they assumed people did not have one. Mistaking morality for naivety, they presumed that people were motivated solely by self-interest – in the narrowest and most venal sense – and could not be moved by principle.'

'One of the most important lessons, and one that goes beyond our borders, from this result is that there is a response to the multiple pathologies of xenophobia, racism and rabid nationalism, bequeathed by globalisation, that does not demand pandering to bigotry.'

We are seeing a backlash to the unfairness of austerity cuts which have targeted those already poor whilst allowing those already rich to continue to make money - 'After the 2010 election, the Conservatives insisted on a period of austerity, claiming that it was necessary to repair public finances in the wake of the global banking crisis. The poor and the public sector have borne the brunt of these cuts – but after seven years, the pain of austerity has spread well beyond the very poorest ... As this sense of precariousness broadened to touch those who had never felt it before, and the desperation felt by an ever-widening cross-section of society deepened even further, we should not be surprised that there was an electoral backlash.'

'The print media are losing their influence in part because people receive much more information online nowadays but also because the right-wing press stopped try to report news objectively and began reporting news polemically (and, as a result, can no longer be trusted as an accurate source of news) - 'But while it was possible to see how most voters had formed their first impressions of Corbyn and May from the image presented by the media, what became clear to me while I was covering the campaign was that the impact of Fleet Street was not decisive. Thanks to the proliferation of online media sources, the decline in newspaper readership and weakening loyalties to established brands, the press does not have the same electoral clout it once did.'


Deacon Blue - The Believers.

Greyfriars Kirk

I had an inspiring HeartEdge visit to Greyfriars Kirk last Wednesday to meet the Minister Revd. Dr. Richard E Frazer and the Associate Minister Revd. Lezley Stewart

Greyfriars is a worshipping congregation of the Church of Scotland in the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town where a church has stood since 1620. The Kirk seeks to be a welcoming, inclusive community and to respond to local needs in a variety of ways. Worship takes place during the week as well as on Sundays in English and Gaelic.

The Kirk is a major venue for the arts, a tourist destination and through the Grassmarket Community Project supports many vulnerable citizens. Greyfriars community outreach takes many forms but is primarily focused around their centre in the Kirkhouse on Candlemaker Row. The project is now managed by Grassmarket Community Project Ltd. - a partnership between Greyfriars Kirk and Grassmarket Mission.

Throughout the week the Grassmarket Community Project offers a variety of workshops aimed at developing people’s self worth, social networks and skills.

Craft, art and community are all central themes in their work. Participants have the opportunity to join in with GRoW wood workshop, the Plough to Plate cookery and gardening program, the Grassroots Textiles workshop, Greyfriars Herb Garden or one of their many arts and education activities.

Although primarily aimed at individuals facing deep social exclusion, the Grassmarket Community Project encourages members of the local community to join in and work side by side with participants from all walks of life.


Ricky Ross - Trouble Came Looking.

Friday, 16 June 2017

Windows on the world (349)

Brussels, 2016


Fleet Foxes - If You Need To, Keep Time on Me.

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Start:Stop - Exchanges of Love

Bible reading

As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one, so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.

“Righteous Father, the world does not know you, but I know you; and these know that you have sent me. I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.” (John 17. 21 – 26)


At several points in John’s Gospel we hear Jesus speaking about his relationship with God the Father and with God the Holy Spirit. When he speaks in this way it is as though Jesus is pulling back the veil which prevents us from seeing God and giving us, thereby, a glimpse of God as Trinity. For example, he says that God the Spirit takes what belongs to God the Son and declares it to us. All that belongs to God the Son, he says, also belongs to God the Father. So, all that Jesus has belongs equally to the Spirit and the Father. Therefore, we have a picture of God the Father giving to God the Son who gives to God the Holy Spirit who gives to us. What is being pictured for us is an exchange of love within the Godhead.

Similarly, when Jesus prayed that his followers might all be one, he prayed this on the basis that his followers might be in God as he is in the Father and the Father is in him. The united relationship of Father, Son and Holy Spirit means that, at the very heart of God is a dynamic relationship in which a constant exchange of love is underway. Jesus prayed that we, who follow in his footsteps, would experience the same oneness with God and each other that he enjoys with God, his Father. In essence, his prayer is that we will experience unity, because unity is what is at the very heart of God.

We can be part of the constant exchange of love in God; a love which involves the continual giving and receiving of affirmation and authority. If we live in God, we live in love and love lives in us. We become included in the constant exchange of love which exists in the Godhead and are, therefore, constantly loved no matter what else is going on in our lives.

The exchange of love at the heart of the Trinity creates an environment of acceptance and affirmation in which authority is constantly shared by being given and received. Our participation in that exchange, as God’s children, then compels us, to make the attempt to create similar exchanges within the communities, organisations and networks of which we are part; whether that is family, workplace, church or community.

How might that work in practice? We could think briefly of the contrast between places where co-operation exists and those where it does not. I can think of one person I know who was recently working in an environment where self-promotion and active criticism of those with whom they worked seemed to be rewarded and the experience of being in that workplace was one of tension, strained relationships, walking on eggshells. Conversely, I know someone who has doubts and questions about the existence of God but whose experience of the quality of relationships in the church she attends has been such a positive contrast with her experience of relationships in society generally that she has found God in her experience of being welcomed, accepted and affirmed for the person that she is. Her experience has been of an exchange of love which connects to that occurring in the Godhead, while the other person’s experience was of a workplace full of suspicion and tension because what was exchanged was gossip and critique rather than love.

I wonder to what extent we can create everyday exchanges of love as a result of our encounter with the love that is constantly being exchanged by God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.


Holy Trinity, as we enter our workplaces may we bring your presence with us. May we speak your peace, your grace, your mercy, and your perfect order in our offices. May the work that we do and the way we do it bring faith, joy, and a smile to all that we come into contact with today. May everything we do today bring hope, life, and encouragement to those around us.

In our everyday exchanges, may we know and share your exchange of love.

Enable us to maintain good relations within our workplaces by minimising scope for conflict or blame and by promoting respect for others. Enable us to go beyond minimum standards of behaviour by showing love to those with which we work.

In our everyday exchanges, may we know and share your exchange of love.

Loving God, you showed us what all-out love looks like when you sacrificed yourself for others. Enable us to love you and others with all our being and in word and deed. Help us to explore what that might mean in our workplaces.

In our everyday exchanges, may we know and share your exchange of love.


Bring the presence of God, maintaining good relations, minimising scope for conflict, promoting respect, loving in word and deed, speaking peace, bring hope, life, and encouragement, sharing exchanges of love. May all those blessings of almighty God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, rest upon you and remain with you always. Amen.


Van Morrison - Street Choir.

Monday, 12 June 2017

Discover & explore - The Lord's Supper

Discover & explore services at St Stephen Walbrook features music and liturgy with the Choral Scholars of St Martin-in-the-Fields. These services explore their themes through a thoughtful mix of music, prayers, readings and reflections:
  • “A perfect service of peace in our busy lives.”
  • “Spiritual food in the middle of the day.”
  • “Beautifully and intelligently done.”
The current series of these services of musical discovery is exploring Reformation 500 themes and continued today with the theme of 'The Lord's Supper'. The service featured the Choral Scholars singing: Ave Verum Corpus – Byrd; Agnus Dei from Cantus Missae, Op. 109 – Rheinberger; O salutaris hostia – Rossini; and Author of life divine – Wesley.
All Discover & explore services begin at 1.10pm:
  • Mon 19 Jun - The Cross alone 
  • Mon 26 Jun - Forgiveness is free 
  • Mon 3 Jul - Life of repentance
In today's service I shared the following reflection:
St Stephen Walbrook was built as a Reformation church. One of the indicators that that is so, are the relative sizes and positions of the communion table and the pulpit. The size of the pulpit indicates the importance placed on the hearing of God’s Word, while the small size of the communion tables reflects the concern of the Reformers that communion was celebrated in a way that made clear that no sacrifice was being made. For this reason the Canons of the Church of England state that communion should be celebrated from a table not an altar. This was part of Reformation debates as to what happened at communion and what was being celebrated.

The Reformation position of the Church of England was made clear in the Book of Common Prayer which states that ‘no Adoration is intended, or ought to be done, either unto the Sacramental Bread or Wine there bodily received, or unto any Corporal Presence of Christ's natural Flesh and Blood. For the Sacramental Bread and Wine remain still in their very natural substances, and therefore may not be adored; (for that were Idolatry, to be abhorred of all faithful Christians;) and the natural Body and Blood of our Saviour Christ are in Heaven, and not here; it being against the truth of Christ's natural Body to be at one time in more places than one.’

These issues and debates then became central to changes made to the building here at St Stephen Walbrook in the 1970s and 80s with the introduction of the Henry Moore altar and the circular reordering of the space under the dome. The Ecclesiastical Court cases regarding the Moore altar centred on the Canon which states that communion must be celebrated at a table not an altar, and revolved around the extent to which the Moore altar resembled either a sacrificial altar or a communion table. Eventually, it was agreed that the Moore altar could be defined as a communion table and agreement was given for its permanent installation.

The size and position of Moore’s altar does however change the original dynamic between in the building between the Lord’s Table and the pulpit (which was reflective of the Reformer’s theology) in favour of a more contemporary theology; that of the Parish Communion movement which successfully made Holy Communion the principal act of worship in Parish churches, instead of Morning or Evening Prayer. By carving a round altar table with forms cut into the circular sides Moore suggested that the centre of the church reflected the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem commemorating the sacrifice of Abraham and Isaac as a prefiguring of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross and the place for the offering of the Eucharist at the heart of Christian worship. This place is now designed for people to gather as a community around the altar where God in the Eucharist can be found at the centre.

The debates initiated by the Reformers therefore continue into our current understandings and practices regarding the celebration of the Eucharist and the gathering of God’s people in worship. At one end of these debates is the understanding that Communion is a remembering of Christ’s sacrifice while, at the other, is the understanding that it is a repeating of Christ's sacrifice.

These, however, are not the only ways of understanding how Jesus is present in the Lord’s Supper and what is accomplished when it is celebrated. To my mind, it takes an artist to understand how the sacraments operate and, for me, that artist is the Roman Catholic painter and poet David Jones. A sacrament is, as St Augustine stated, 'an outward and visible sign of an inward and invisible grace.’

For David Jones, a key word in this regard is ‘anamnesis’, which means to re-present under an existing reality under a different mode. It is, therefore, to do with the re-calling, re-presentation and re-membering of an original act or object in a form that is different from but connected to the original act or object that is being re-called. So, remembering the Lord’s Supper is not simply recalling it to mind; instead we re-member it by re-enacting and re-presenting the original act. The original act is a once-for-all act but it can be re-created and re-presented in our Eucharistic celebrations. We use a different form to bring a past act into the present in a way that means we encounter, receive and respond to that original act afresh. We are, therefore, doing more than simply recalling that act in our minds but, at the same, are not repeating the act in its original form in the present.

David Jones developed an understanding of art based on anamnesis which viewed all art as sacramental because the signs made by artists are the thing signified under the forms of their particular art. The artwork is the original object or action that has been re-presented but in a different form meaning that it is both ‘the thing’ and a ‘different thing’ at one and the same time. In the same way, at the Lord’s Supper, the bread and wine are both simply bread and wine and the body and blood of Christ at one and the same time.

In the Introduction to his long poem entitled ‘The Anathemata’, Jones wrote that ‘words like “remembrance” or “memorial” hav[e] for us a connotation of something absent which is only mentally recollected. But in the scriptures of both the Old and New Testament, anamnesis and its cognate verb have a sense of re-calling before God an event in the past so that it becomes here and now operative by its effect.’

This poem begins and ends with the celebration of the Mass in London during wartime. In between, Jones explores the elements which form this particular celebration of the Mass - the very particular political and civilizational conditions of Rome which led to the Sacrifice of the Cross combined with a resultant fusion of Jewish, Greco-Roman, Germanic and Celtic cultures. His survey of these elements eventually leads him back to the celebration of the Mass in wartime London meaning that, as Kathleen Staudt notes, the ending of The Anathemata ‘insists that there is something constant in the gestures of offering that Christ, priest, and poet have made and make “at all times,” regardless of the products of that gesture’ (Incarnation Reconsidered: The Poem as Sacramental Act in The Anathemata of David Jones, Contemporary Literature, Vol. 26, No. 1 (Spring, 1985), 81-82).

On this basis, the bread and wine of The Lord’s Supper is at once a “thing” in itself, part of the world of flesh and form, and a “representation” -- a “showing again” of the original act under another form. Just as in the incarnation Christ brings the human and divine together in his body, so in The Lord’s Supper, the material and the eternal are brought together in the act of making a sign and in the re-membering, re-calling, re-enacting and re-presentation of that sign we receive the original reality of that sign but in a different form. In this way the outward and visible sign of the Eucharist works an inward and invisible grace in us. Jesus comes to us in the form of bread and wine and all who receive the Sacrament receive his body and blood.


Wise and gracious God, you spread a table before us; nourish your people with the word of life and the bread of heaven. With the bread that we bring, we shall remember Jesus. With the wine that we bring, we shall remember Jesus. Bread for his body, wine for his blood, gifts from God to his table we bring. We shall remember Jesus. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation: through your goodness we have bread to set before you, which earth has given and human hands have made. It will be for us the bread of life. Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation: through your goodness we have wine to set before you, fruit of the vine and work of human hands. It will be for us the cup of salvation. As the grain once scattered in the fields and the grapes once dispersed on the hillside are reunited on the Lord’s Table in bread and wine, so, Lord, may your whole Church soon be gathered together from the corners of the earth into your kingdom. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We thank You, Lord God, that You refresh us with this precious gift of The Lord’s Supper. We ask for Your mercy, that You would use this meal to nurture in us strong faith toward You and genuine love among us all. Almighty and Ever-loving God, we thank You that You feed us at Your Table with this spiritual food and assure us of Your goodness toward us. We thank You that we are members of the Body of Your Son. Assist us with Your grace, so that we may continue in this holy fellowship, and live more fully to Your glory. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

The Blessing

Blessed be God, by whose grace creation is renewed, by whose love heaven is opened, by whose mercy we offer our sacrifice of praise; and the blessing of God almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be among you and remain with you always. Amen.


Gioachino Rossini: O salutaris hostia.

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Windows on the world (348)

2016, Brussels


Arcade Fire - Everything Now.

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Those who are led into peace by the Holy Spirit become peacemakers

Here is my sermon from today's Eucharist at St Stephen Walbrook:

There are two occasions on which we are told Jesus’ disciples received the Holy Spirit. The second was at Pentecost but the first was one of the Resurrection appearances, in which Jesus appeared to his disciples and said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit (John 20. 21 & 22). On this occasion the Holy Spirit came as the breath of God and as words of peace.

The Spirit’s coming in this way was promised by Jesus who, as we heard in today’s Gospel Reading (John 14. 15 - 31), said, “I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. This is the Spirit of truth … he abides with you, and he will be in you” (John 14. 15 – 17). “The Holy Spirit … will remind you of all that I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid” (John 14. 26 & 27). By giving them the Spirit he was giving them his peace and doing so in a similar way to that in which he had received it; as, when he was baptised, the Spirit descended upon him in the bodily form of a dove. The dove being a Biblical symbol of peace; a symbol that derived from the dove which brought news to Noah of the flood having receded, enabling life to begin again on earth.

At St Martin-in-the-Fields two thousand white paper doves are currently hanging in the nave forming a 15 metre-long paper sculpture called Les Colombes – The White Doves. Following successful installations with over 300,000 visitors in Jerusalem and Munich, these origami doves bear hopes and greetings from people who come into the church, from passers-by, from night revellers in the bar around the corner, from locals and strangers, people from all over the world. Catholic and Protestant, Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, poor and rich, everyone may fold them and should fold them. In the flock each individual, separately folded dove becomes one of many. The German artist, Michael Pendry, said: “Folded by different people, the doves in their unity stand for such a fundamental human right. The time has come to admonish and to stand up for this – for the right to peace and freedom! So that that the flock of doves might grow, from place to place, from country to country, across all borders.”

In this way, the flock is a symbol of a collective spirit of peace; one which is particularly needed at this time when terror has revisited our streets and leisure activities. The flock of doves heads from the entrance of the church towards the sanctuary, where lies the answer to all the questions of our spiritual potential – who am I, where do I come from, where am I going? In answer to these questions, the descent of the Spirit in the bodily form of a dove tells us that we are the beloved sons and daughters of our Father God and that we are here to use our God-given abilities to do work for him that only we can do.

Vicar of St Martin-in-the-Fields, Sam Wells, says that: “When at his baptism the Holy Spirit descended on Jesus like a dove Jesus wasn’t blown away – he was touched more deeply that words can say or eyes can perceive. That’s what this exhibition is about – and what’s more, it affirms that the Holy Spirit works through the humble hands of you and me.” Jesus gives us his peace, in the form of the Holy Spirit, so that we can then be peacemakers ourselves.

Sam has explained that “The Holy Spirit is the part of God that gives us here and now and forever and always those things that Jesus brought us once and for all. Jesus has shown us and brought us peace, but we need the Spirit to continue to make peace in and among us. The one Spirit proclaims “peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near” (2:17). One of the most difficult things in life is to balance your care for those who are near – your regular circle of friends, family, neighbours, and colleagues – with your responsibility for those who are far off – distant friends, family, fellow citizens, and people of other nations and faiths … how easy it is to become so wrapped up with a small circle of intimates that we can’t register the need of those outside our own tiny world … It’s hard to be at peace with those who are far and at peace with those who are near … Jesus is our peace because he gives us the Holy Spirit to reconcile those from whom we are far off and those to whom we are near. Jesus is our peace because he gives us the Holy Spirit to reconcile the parts of ourselves that are far from God with the parts of ourselves that are near.”

When others spread war, anxiety, division and strife, those led by the Spirit make peace. Those who are led into peace by the Holy Spirit become peacemakers.


Victoria Williams - Holy Spirit.

The genius of Monsieur Lefébure-Wély

Each Friday at St Stephen Walbrook a free weekly lunchtime organ recital is held featuring a different organist each week.

For three weeks this year, however, our organist will be Dr Anthony Gritten sharing the genius of Monsieur Lefébure-Wély (1817-69) as he performs L’Organiste Moderne (1867) written 150 years ago and performed to celebrate the composer’s 200th birthday. Book 1 - 4 was on 24 March, Book 5 - 8 on 9 June and Book 9 - 12 on 17 November.

Dr Anthony Gritten is a Fellow of the Royal College of Organists, and studied with Harry Gabb, David Sanger, and Anne Page. He gave the first complete performance of Daniel Roth’s magnum opus, Livre d’Orgue pour le Magnificat, and has performed four times in St. Sulpice, Paris, including a recital as part of Roth’s 70th birthday celebrations. He has also performed numerous works by Richard Francis, including the premiere of a four-movement symphony on themes by Lefébure-Wély. Other projects have included anniversary performances of the complete works of Tunder, Buxtehude (a 6½ hour recital), Homilius, Brahms, and Mendelssohn. Many of Anthony's recitals are listed at

Anthony was an organ scholar and research student at Cambridge University, writing his doctorate on Stravinsky. He has worked at the University of East Anglia and Royal Northern College of Music, and is currently Head of Undergraduate Programmes at the Royal Academy of Music. His publications include two books on Music and Gesture and essays on Igor Stravinsky, John Cage, and Frederick Delius. Many of his publications can be downloaded from


Lefebure-Wely - Sortie in Eb.

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Jamaican Art – Intuitive Outsiders But With That Old Time Religion

Edward Lucie-Smith writes on Artlyst about 'Jamaican Spiritual', the next exhibition at St Stephen Walbrook. In his article Lucie-Smith writes:

"the show ... features ... the spirituality that pervades a great deal of the art produced in Jamaica, as well as its frequent resistance to being categorised as ‘ethnic’ – i.e. as in some way necessarily Africanising. The images are about seeing Jamaica as it actually is – not as some lost fragment of African culture, transferred intact to a different hemisphere.

Where the idea of Africa is stressed, it is to make a theological statement. Christopher Lawrence’s icon-like portrayal of an African Christ declares that Christ exists as a Saviour for all mankind."


Judith Gayle - Give Me Jesus.

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Les Colombes Opening Night

For the opening night of Les Colombes: The White Doves, an Art for Peace Project by Michael Pendry at St Martin-in-the-Fields, Israeli-Swiss duo, Yonatan Maimon and Knaan Shabtay, presented an evening of Hebrew and English folk songs.

Their music combined delicate virtuoso guitar playing with catchy melodies and brought a fresh approach to traditional folk music. The concert was followed by a light and sound showing of Les Colombes: The White Doves.

Yonatan Maimon is an Israeli folk artist who started playing classical guitar at the age of 11. In 2011 he toured Israel with songs he wrote during his military conscription service. In 2014 he released his first demo album, Yonatan Maimon, selling all the copies of the first edition. In spring 2015 he recorded his debut album Beit Shearim produced at the UNESCO site Beit She’arim National Park. This special album was recorded live; inspired by the countryside and influenced by Nick Drake, Jose Gonzalez and Israeli-Latin singer David Broza and poet Meir Ariel. Kol Davar Katan was the first single from the album and was played on several radio stations across Israel and France and performed live in local indie festivals. Yonatan’s second album is soon to be released

Knaan Shabtay is a singer-songwriter and guitar player. His musical genre is often related to indie or folk and is inspired by such artists as Paul Simon and James Taylor. After spending some time in different bands, as frontman or guitar player, in November 2014 he independently released his debut EP Lost In Time which includes four songs. Stay A Little Longer is the first single from the EP and after being featured on different radio stations in Israel and Switzerland in early 2015, Knaan toured Israel including a show at Haifa 100 Live Festival. Sunrise is the first song from his new EP to be released later this year. Its live music video was released a few months ago to critical acclaim from national and international music bloggers.

Les Colombes is a multimedia installation by German artist Michael Pendry. Following successful installations with over 300,000 visitors in Jerusalem and Munich, Les Colombes will descend on St Martin-in-the-Fields, Trafalgar Square from 31 May – 3 July 2017.

Coming straight from Jerusalem, the 2,000 white paper doves, a symbol of the spirit, but also of peace, float through the nave of the church forming an almost 15 metre long sculpture. Light moves around the space and over the sculpture simulating the doves in flight. Quietly and playfully they integrate their movement into the atmosphere, exuding a magical sense of tranquillity and strength.

A sound cloud especially composed and produced for the installation by digital music producers Digital Haze infuses the space with the sound of cooing and fluttering wings. While a gentle rustling of the wind and mystical chords hover in space, alternating between a strong intensity and an ebbing away.

Les Colombes is free to visit during regular opening hours with special late night openings on Thursdays and Fridays from 9.30-11.00pm.


Knaan Shabtay - Something Is Missing.