Linda McCray is a Montana-based artist who creates abstract spiritual paintings. She leads retreats on art as prayer, and on praying through art. She is an art-and-environment designer, art consultant for sacred space, adjunct art professor, and advocate for contemporary art in worship. Her passion in painting is translating the Gospel and sacred realities into contemporary abstract art to draw today’s believers into a deeper relationship with God.
“Your passion of translating the Gospel into abstract spiritual paintings indeed invites new believers into relationship with God.”
“Linda’s art fires the imagination and creates the environment for a deeper encounter with the real presence of Christ.”
McCray creates The Liturgical Artists Directory, and several of her articles have been published by Georgetown Center for Liturgy on their online resource and the magazine Ministry and Liturgy. Linda lectures ecumenically on sacred art for art museums, universities, conferences and churches---for example, Form/Reform: The National Conference on Environment and Art for Catholic Worship; The University of Dallas Ministry Conferences; and the Madden Museum of Art-Denver. She is dedicated to her goal of helping bridge the gap between mainstream contemporary art and sacred art.
“Linda McCray steps into the breach that exists between contemporary art and the faith community with her paintings. McCray uses light, color, and texture in her powerful, abstract compositions to create emotionally charged images which afford the faithful instruction, the seeker time for reflection, and the pilgrim a place of refuge.”
Adjunct Art Professor McCray teaches online Art Appreciation: Sacred and Secular Perspectives for the University of Mary and Art and Spirit: The Sacred and the Secular for Loyola University Chicago, Institute of Pastoral Studies. She creates custom art as prayer retreats and praying through art worship services. Her genuine understanding of art history, contemporary art and all media in combination with her vast connections with artists are the foundation of her sacred art consulting. She puts her knowledge into practice while creating art-and-environment designs for faith communities and religious events.
She is a member of Christians in the Visual Arts, Association of Consultants for Liturgical Space, Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Associate, and Society for the Arts in Religion and Theological Studies. Linda graduated from The University of Montana with a Master of Fine Arts in Painting and Drawing; cum laude from Washington State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Fine Arts; Diocese of Helena Program for Lay Ministers, a 12 credit Pastoral Ministry course through Carroll College; and Benedictine Spiritual Formation Program, Benet Hill Monastery with a certificate in spiritual direction.
I translate sacred realities into abstract art that goes beyond words and nourish the spirit. There are a number of ways to translate transcendent reality into paint. To form visible signs of invisible grace, I use abstraction which—so powerfully through color, line, and texture—speaks directly to the heart. My paintings communicate heart to heart. I layer my paintings with symbolism, such as sand from Jerusalem. The torn-like edges symbolize that they are a part of something much greater. While these paintings have specific religious meaning to me, I hope they invite you to reflect on spiritual realities dear to your heart.
My art direction is connected to the long tradition of artists who have turned to a world we cannot see except through faith. I could not ask for a richer history to follow. The Spirit has motivated art making over time in all cultures. Today, mainstream contemporary art and sacred art are worlds apart. As G.K. Chesterton wrote, “In the beginning there was art for God’s sake, then in the Renaissance there was art for man’s sake. Beginning with Impressionism there was art for art’s sake. Now, unfortunately, we have no art for God’s sake.” I strive to bring back art for God’s sake.
Images in Slide Show
As a benefit of membership, SARTS members are encouraged to submit up to ten images with an artist's statement, and we will be happy to create a page for you in our members' gallery. Please submit the following to firstname.lastname@example.org: