The Ethos of Liturgical Art
and the Aesthetics of Orthodox Bells

The Church's worship is art-- in the sense of a communal use of material reality, a human effort to build with and to shape the earth's material, bringing it into that existential fullness of life which is communion and relationship.

Thus at the same time, the Church's art is also worship. For us, art is not merely decorative, does not merely express beauty, but can (and therefore must!) express truth as well. This does not mean we use art to express, extrinsically and mechanically, some abstract truth that is other than its own. Rather, we find that in and through human art, matter is capable of manifesting and highlighting its own "logos"— its own distinctive relationship to God and to the rest of creation.

Orthodox art is the harmony of praise formed by the "words" (logoi) or inner principles of created things. Insofar as they reflect the Creator's intention for them, material things serve the eucharistic event of communion. The "true life" of the eucharist operates and is celebrated within the realities given in nature; it is not imposed on it as an abstraction.

This can be seen...