Painting for Understanding: Mindy Bielas Inspired by the Old Testament

Attendees of the Spectrum UltraViolet Arts Festival September 12 and 13 will see Mindy Bielas' paintings of biblical women; in this interview, she talks about how she uses her art in her academic work, as well as to help process social issues she is struggling with.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at
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Mindy Bielas said at the end of this article some of the wisest counsel I’ve heard from any colleague in ministry., male or female. I hope she gives herself this wise insightful gift:

“Go for it! Do it! Don’t let your fears of failure or of unbridled success bind you. Don’t let others’ perspectives limit the issues or ideas you wish to communicate. Don’t ever take critique personally; instead use what you can and let the rest fall out of your brain. And most importantly be honest with yourself and create from the deepest parts of your soul.”

After all of the committee studies, debates, and verbage about the issues we face as a church I wish we had expressed our ideas and convictions using art an, music and drama. Several years ago the play “The Red Books” helped many to understand Ellen G. White. I am glad that Spectrum and others are encouraging this emphasis on art. Art is integral in our culture because it provides us with a deeper understanding of emotions, self-awareness, and more. The following are all reasons why I believe everyone needs art in their lives.

  1. It is a natural part of us. Sometimes other forms of communication may fail to allow us to express ourselves completely, and this is when we turn to art.
  2. Records the emotions of society.
    Through art we learn the joy felt during times of happiness and we see the pain and despair during times of suffering. We see the hopes and the dreams, or the fears and regrets of the past.
  3. Helps us achieve a better self awareness.
    Understanding our emotions can help us heal, grow and improve ourselves. Increasing our self awareness through art can lead to more success both personally and professionally.
  4. Encourages critical thinking and better communication.
    Art not only helps strengthen our critical thinking skills, but improves the way we communicate our thoughts and emotions to others.
  5. Bridges the gap between cultures. Through art we gain a better understanding of cultures in the past, but it also gives us insight into various cultures of present day.
  6. Improves our daily lives.
    Art can make a community more beautiful. It makes the spaces we work in more interesting.