Kuyper College President an Art Prize Finalist

Written by Terry DeBoer on . Posted in Local

Rolling Down - Kroeze 2015235A sculpture bearing a Bible verse is one of the top 20 vote-getters in Art Prize 2015. "Rolling Down," a 24 foot tall wooden waterfall quoting Amos 5:24 is one of five finalists in the competition's three-dimensional category.

It was created by the "Kroeze Krew" which consists of Kuyper College president Nick Kroeze, his sons Nicholas and Nathan, and son-in-law Chet Glass.

Art Prize officials Sunday (10/4) announced the leaders after the first round of public voting in four art categories in which 377, 302 votes were cast. Round two voting continues until Thursday night Oct. 8. Winners will be revealed in ceremonies on Friday evening, with the winning entry's artist(s) receiving $200,000 (details on how to vote online.

All art work will remain on display at least until Oct. 11.


The impressive "Rolling Down" sculpture (displayed in the huge lobby of the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel, 187 Monroe Ave. NW in Grand Rapids), was inspired by the words of the late Dr. Martin Luther King. King quoted the verse from the book of Amos in his final address before his 1968 assassination.

The words are spelled out on either side of the waterfall, with the actual Biblical reference on the top left. "Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream."

The work symbolically reasons that even with society's varying philosophies, prejudices and injustices, the faith-filled call is to learn from each other in community and work together. That thought is shown by the sculpture's seven different kinds of wood which fall separately from the waterfall's summit before fully joining together at the base to become a single stream.

The senior Kroeze, a California native, said he's enjoyed wood-working since his childhood. "It's only in the past 18 years that I have been designing and executing interpretive, spiritual themes in wood," he said.

Last year the "Kroeze Krew" had an Art Prize entry titled "The Pond," for which a series of accompanying devotionals were written (https://www.facebook.com/notes/praisecraft/the-pond-devotional-one-thirteen/525786047558593 ). "We truly enjoyed sharing this experience together and found it to be a good family building time," he noted.


*Ironically, another three-dimensional Art Prize entry this year also suggests the verse from the book of Amos. "Let Justice Roll on Like a River" by Jenison Christian School teacher Mary Steenwyk is a large-scale, mixed media work displayed at the downtown Holiday Inn, 310 Pearl St. NW.

*In its seven year history Art Prize has seen several religious-themed entries do well in public voting. In 2011 "Crucifixion," a 9 by 13 stained glass mosaic by artist Mia Tavonatti, won the top prize.

*Among the finalists in the juried portion of this year's competition is an entry titled "The Last Supper." The name might suggest a specific Christian theme. Rather, it's a series of several hundred hand-painted dinner plates depicting the final meal requests of death row inmates. It's exhibited at Kendall College of Art and Design. The juried finalists also are in line for a separate, $200,000 prize.
Author Information
Terry DeBoer
Terry is journalist who writes for newspapers, magazines, newsletters and websites. His most frequented “beat” is arts and entertainment. He is married with two children and lives in Grand Rapids.

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