Nomade by Jaume Plensa
When a writer walks through a sculpture garden, her heart frenzies at the meanings behind the art. From one artist to another, we get it. Don't we? Read this description of Nomade:
"The sculpture exemplifies Plensa's ongoing interest in ideas presented in written text, as wel las the human body and how it perceives the world around it. He has described individual letters or symbols as components that have little or no meaning on their own, but blossom into words thoughts, and language when combined with others. Plensa's screens of letters offer a metaphor for human culture, in which a person alone has limited potential, but when formed into groups or societies, becomes stronger."--from the John and Mary Pappajohn Sculpture Park Visitor Guide
At first glance, this piece of art is a simplistic sculpture with letters that I've recognized from the time I could speak. I even snapped a shot of my new kindergartner in front of it, thinking, a perfect backdrop for her school beginning.
But, it's not just that.
Not when you stand beneath the towering nomad at night, with the lighting just so--hinting that there is something more. And there is so much more after reading the artist's intent, isn't there?
Writer, have you ever considered that while your letters and words might not be unique, but the connectivity of them in a unique order, with unique meaning, translate into a story of great potential? One that describes the human heart in a special display of humanity?
In the art above, I have found a beautiful example of the existence God has invited me into, not just as a human (hehe), but as a writer.
Writers are part of this special metaphor of culture. We are individuals that cleave to a whole society of artists and become stronger in our relationship. Not only on a personal level, but in our art. A book is never only one person's doing, is it? I am learning that after receiving my first revision letter (all you experienced authors snicker, I know). But, after years of critiques and chipping away of my pride, I receive the voices of editors without anger. Fright, well, yes. Uncertainty? A smidge. But, after learning to value of others' voices spoken over my work, I cannot help but accept and revise. I know that this book will only make it to a shelf by the hands of many. It's potential is limited in my hands alone, it must be given over to others.
Writers, we are not islands, even if we choose to be as we write in our caves. We are connected to this fantastic whole which make our potential burst forth into the flowering of creativity refined especially for the human heart.
In a matter of days, I will join in with the whole. I'll be among the people who share my vision to weave Christ's love in the crafting of letters and words and stories. And the writer people to which I belong, as individual as each of us may be, will find that we are so connected by passion and art, that our potential rises to heights beyond ourselves.
The ACFW conference is a mirror image of this art above. As many individuals unite for a cluster of days to form this beautiful whole.
I daresay that whole actually takes on a different body.
Not a nomad.
Possibly a Savior. One on a cross.
We are all parts of the body of Christ, individuals working together to strengthen this goal--
God's love displayed by letters and words.
Angie Dicken is a full-time mom and lives in the Midwest with her Texas Aggie sweetheart. An ACFW member since 2010, she has written seven historical novels and is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of The Steve Laube Agency. Angie also spends her time designing one-sheets and drinking good coffee with great friends. Check her personal blog at www.angiedicken.com and connect at:Twitter: @angiedicken