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Artist Mentoring

Detailed information about 2020 Forum Mentoring is not yet available but will be posted in the future. Please review the information from the 2019 Forum for a look at the types of mentoring that may be available at the 2020 Forum.

The evangelical church’s modern philosophy of pragmatism and efficiency have relegated art to the quiet, gilded rooms of luxury. But is this God’s plan? Are beauty and art superfluous? Mere luxuries? Beauty transcends practicality and draws the believer ever closer to the ultimate Creator. The artist’s task is to create a larger lens to the world, a new way of seeing, an alternate avenue to ultimate Truth.

This is no easy task, and a lonely path to walk alone. Artists are subject to unique challenges along the way. Delicate temperaments easily lead to depression. Discouragement creeps in as the difficulty of making a living from art is constantly confronted; after all, the term ‘starving artist’ exists for a reason. Perhaps the most pronounced struggle for the Christian artist is the grey space he finds himself inhabiting ­- misunderstood by the church, mocked by society at large.

Forum Artist Mentoring offers the opportunity to dialogue with an experienced Christian artist leader who has walked this path before you. These meetings create space for connection, practical help, and guidance. We encourage any artist attending the Forum to participate in Forum Artist Mentoring.


Tim Basselin is Assistant Professor of Media Arts and Worship at one of the largest seminaries in the world: Dallas Theological Seminary. He teaches classes on the intersection of theology and culture, including classes on film, art, literature, and disability. He is also the director of the Media Arts apprenticeship program at DTS and enjoys collaborating with his students. He serves on the editorial board for Christian Scholar’s Review. He and his wife, Robin, have four children and enjoy travelling and camping.


Delta David Gier has been called a dynamic voice on the music scene, recognized widely for his penetrating interpretations of the standard symphonic repertoire, passionate commitment to new music, and significant community engagement. Orchestras Mr. Gier has conducted include the New York Philharmonic, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony, the St. Louis Symphony, and the Minnesota Orchestra. In Europe, his engagements include the Bergen Philharmonic, the Polish National Radio Symphony, and the Bucharest Philharmonic, along with many other orchestras in Italy, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Turkey. He studied at the University of Michigan under the renowned conducting teacher Gustav Meier, along with studies at the Tanglewood Music Center and Aspen Music Festival. He was a Fulbright scholar in eastern Europe from 1988-90. He has chaired the music jury of the Pulitzer Prize and is a frequent panelist for the League of American orchestras. The Lakota Music Project was developed under Gier’s direction to address racial tensions between Native Americans and whites in the region the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra serves. Other engagement projects with the SDSO have included Arab, Chinese and Sudanese/Somali refugees.

Todd E. Johnson (Ph.D. University of Notre Dame) currently holds the Brehm Chair of Worship, Theology, and the Arts at Fuller Theological Seminary and is the Theological Director of the Brehm Center for Worship, Theology and the Arts. As a faculty member for the Center for Advanced Theological Studies, he began the PhD concentration in Christian Worship. Before coming to Fuller, he served on the faculties of North Park Theological Seminary and Loyola University Chicago. Ordained in the Evangelical Covenant Church, he has 20 years of experience in church and campus ministry and has been involved in inner-city youth work and community projects in Chicago and the surrounding area. Johnson is coauthor of Living Worship: A Multimedia Resource for Students and Leaders (2010) and Performing the Sacred: Theology and Theatre in Dialogue (2009), coeditor of Common Worship in Theological Education (2010), and editor of The Conviction of Things Not Seen: Worship and Ministry in the 21st Century (2002). He is a vice president of the Liturgical Conference and serves as an editorial board member for Questions Liturgique. He is also the recipient of grants to develop pedagogical resources for teaching theology and worship, including interactive software and web apps.

Beat Rink is the founder and director of Crescendo, an international ministry of Cru amongst professional musicians (classic / jazz), also serving other artists  ( He has studied history, German literature, and later theology. He is an ordained pastor of the Swiss Reformed church. He has published several books on arts and faith and his own poetry, and he edited for many years the TUNE INs (weekly spiritual / theological thoughts for artists). He is the co-founder of ARTS+, a Christian art ministries network operating in several countries. He lives with his wife, originally from Finland, in Basel.



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