On the first day of ArtWalk my true love gave to me….A portrait of a pear tree. We’ll… so what if that makes no sense. Barrington, Illinois is throwing a Christmas ArtWalk in the 12 days leading up to December 24th and that’s all that matters!!!

According to the Chicago Tribune, more than the garland, Christmas trees and sparkling lights that people have come to associate with this time of year, the Christmas Art Walk will help remind people why the holiday is celebrated in the first place.

Celebrating the 150th Anniversary of the Village of Barrington, the Jonahre Foundation presents the GIFT TO REMEMBER Christmas Art Walk 2015. Twelve artists have been commissioned from places as far as Africa and Korea to join local artists in Barrington to create a truly international reflection of the Christmas story.

Artists Marg Rehnberg says his soul is seized by the wonders of provocative earth…and as a child, Antonia Ruppert enjoyed watching her Dad draw after school.
“With simple tools, magic was made. I was in absolute awe of this. Today, I believe that one can find truth, light and “magic” in this gift of art.”

Remind you of anything? Like how God himself made us from the simple earth, perhaps? Hey, God is an artist!

These are just two of the many local artists showing in these next few days, inspired by everything from sound to beauty – all ready to share their talents and their Christmas gifts of creation with the locals.

The free event, which started Dec. 12th and runs until Christmas Eve, will feature twelve original pieces of artwork from twelve different artists from various backgrounds —  African, Korean, Ukranian, Iranian, Scandinavian and Thai — in twelve different stores throughout downtown Barrington.

Finally, a Christmas celebration that centers around the sweet Baby Jesus. The Christmas ArtWalk is reverened by a long list of local churches including Barrington Presbyterian Church, Lutheran Church of The Atonement,  Salem United Methodist Church, St. Anne Catholic Community and the Living Grace Community Church, just to name a few.

‘The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands.” (Psalm 19:1)
By  the grace of God, Elham Rafiei Pour an Iranian artist and refugee, currently living in Turkey paints beautifully, despite the fact that she doesn’t have hands. A missionary has helped the organizers connect with Elham, who were grateful that she’s taking part in the 2015 Christmas Art Walk.

Hyatt Moore is a faith-filled painter working almost exclusively in oils. He worked as an art and creative director until his true calling as an artist became clear. Hyatt is a citizen of the world, and his paintings often reflect images from his travels with his wife, artist Anne Moore.

“God’s creation is all around us, and yet we seldom take notice of the harmony these God-given elements provide in infinite variety and proportions. My goal with each painting is to speak the truth and to transcribe the beautiful. It’s in these moments of creating I feel His pleasure and purpose in my life. It is even more wonderful when others can share in the experience and be inspired by God’s creation through my work”, says Moore.

It’s time for service…starting December 12th at noon Docent led tours, meet and greet the artists, nativity plays, musical concerts, and Christmas Caroling will commence as families are invited to EXPLORE, DISCOVER and WALK through 12 stores following a map through the Village of Barrington. To top it off, if the children are naughty they don’t have to fear monsters with chains threatening to carry them away into the cold-blistery night.

The art and theater presentations held during Christmas ArtWalk are meant to inspire viewers to remember the TRUE GIFT OF CHRISTMAS. The ArtWalk culminates with a reenactment of the giving of the wise men’s gifts, gold, frankincense and myrrh and the meaning each bring to celebrate the gift of Jesus.

“Really, what it boils down to is to bring religious art into secular spaces where people can have these encounters,” said Renee Blue, a spokeswoman with the event.

“Whether people subscribe to a certain set of religious beliefs, are exploring, or even if they don’t identify as religious, the art is meant to cause a thought-provoking and spirit-provoking experiences,” Blue said.


The diversity of artists at the event serves to illustrate the equally-powerful impact the story has had on people from such different backgrounds.

“Though translators were necessary to describe the meanings of the artists’ work, we discovered that what was established was a common language in pictures for all cultures and ages,” event founder Christine Gunn-Danforth said in a statement.

FMI: christmasartwalk.com