Kirsten Malcolm Berry's Artist's Statement

Woven Together by the Word

My focus as a liturgical artist is the New Testament. A Greek verse is integrated into each of my watercolors, linking viewers to its earliest form. The use of Greek reminds us that the Scriptures come to us through the vehicles of cultures and languages other than our own; the presence of the text in an unfamiliar script hints at the global nature of God’s grace to humankind.

The configurations of repeated shapes in my work reflect the influence of several indigenous art forms. The daughter of Presbyterian missionaries, I grew up in the Philippines and was exposed to the decorative use of patterns on Filipino and other Southeast Asian fabrics, basketry, and brass. Geometric woolen tapestries of my Scandinavian heritage have also affected my sense of design, as have Native American weaving, traditional quilts, and Byzantine mosaics.

The exercise of faith is sometimes difficult for those of us who long for perceptible signs of the presence of God. Painting the images of the Bible helps me translate the abstract into the tangible; I begin to grasp that the Word indeed became flesh.