Screenshot of a video of Marcio Lima talking

Arts, architecture and theology: hear more from Catalyst Marcio Lima 

The Logos and Cosmos Initiative’s Tier Two Catalysts have started running projects in their universities that spark curiosity and wonder about theology and the sciences.  

Catalyst Marcio Lima is a Professor of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of São Paulo in Brazil. He is developing a theology and the arts research program for Christian students who are involved with ABUB Brazil, the IFES national movement.  

As Christians, the narrative arc of creation, fall and redemption is the lens through which we see the world. Marcio’s project explores such questions as: What if we looked at this biblical narrative through the arts and vice versa? Would we understand more about God, the world and what it means to be human? Find out more in Marcio’s 2-minute long video below.  

At the Logos and Cosmos Initiative, we talk a lot about “theology and the sciences.” It is no accident that we use the plural term, “sciences.” We use this term to mean a range of academic disciplines, including not only the natural sciences but also the social sciences and the arts. Our Tier Two Catalysts, who are currently running inspiring projects, are from a diverse range of 13 different academic backgrounds. 

Marcio’s video is in Spanish but an English transcript can be found below. 

English-language transcript of Marcio’s video: 

Hi! I’m Marcio Lima. I live in São Paulo, Brazil. I am an architect and professor of architecture. I am one of the catalysts of the Logos and Cosmos Initiative. The goal of my project is developing a research program in theology and arts for university students.  

What led me to work on this topic was the need to explore the relationship between the artistic language and the religious experience. We start from the assumption that the arts lead us to relate in an intentional and intense way with the physical, emotional, and imaginative characteristics of a human. They enable us to get involved in activities which create meaning and thus contribute to integrally shape the human being. That is the reason we ask ourselves: do the visual arts and architecture reveal in a unique way something about the knowledge of God or about the world or about ourselves?  

From this perspective, and knowing that the answer to this question is positive, the proposed project seeks to explore how the arts contribute to the expression of what we know about the world and about God. Our hope is to prepare students to establish connections and promote dialogue within the academic world about the existing relationship between the arts and faith.  

I am currently drafting the theoretical basis of the course to be offered in September. After the course, we will have a mentoring program for students. They will have to develop a research project related to arts, architecture, and theology. We believe that the project will have a positive impact by opening a more poetic way of understanding faith and reality and increasing meaningful artistic productions, since our vision of God and reality transforms the way we see and act in the world. Thank you very much! 

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