Since 1970, the founders of Living Water College have studied the arts and have performed, taught and directed professional theatre and film.
The founders have had many opportunities to work with young artists seeking further training. Research has revealed that most contemporary fine arts institutions provide abundant skill development, but almost all adhere to the notion that art is subjective. Fine arts training is not presented in the context of reason and faith but as a means of expressing personal emotion and opinions.
Without a grounding in classical literature and philosophy, an artist must rely only upon individual experiences, expressing personal ideologies rather than universal truths. Without an intellectual and spiritual experience of true joy, true hope or true love, only conditional versions of these virtues will be expressed, and the artist will gravitate toward despair. The ability to positively inspire our culture becomes limited by the education and personal development of the artist.
Historically, the education of artists provided the means by which their works could have a positive impact upon Western Culture. Faith and reason were the key elements of an artist’s education, prompting Michelangelo to declare: “a man does not paint with his hands, but with his mind.” William Shakespeare would have been incapable of creating his masterpieces of wisdom and truth without his classical education and his faith.
Late in the 1990’s, the founders of Living Water College of the Arts began to consider the merits of developing a modern institution designed to offer the kind of education that had formed great artists of the past.
It was evident:
- In order to produce excellent art, artistic skills need to be developed.
- In order to effectively develop reason, students need to wrestle with the truths imbedded in classical writings.
- In order to provide growth in faith, theology and a personal spiritual regimen must permeate the study of art and the development of reason.
The result is an integrated program of Art, Faith and Reason: the three pillars of Living Water College of the Arts.