Faith in Arts: Conversations

Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center (BMCM+AC) and UNC Asheville are hosting multiple public conversations and interviews with a diverse group of artists, curators, faith leaders, and scholars to explore the role of arts in spiritual practice and religious life and the role of spiritual practice and religious life in the arts.

We start each conversation with the open-ended question: what does faith in arts mean to you?

Next Conversation: June 9, 2021 – Christopher-Rasheem McMillan

Christopher-Rasheem McMillan is a performance-related artist and scholar. He has a joint appointment between Dance and Gender, Women’s & Sexuality Studies at the University of Iowa. McMillan received his BA from Hampshire College, his MFA in Experimental Choreography from the Laban Conservatoire, London, and his PhD in Theology and Religious Studies from King’s College, London (2017). He uses video, performance, photography and oral storytelling to explore themes of race, memory, queer desire, religion, personal and public mythology.

Learn more and listen to McMillan’s conversation on June 9 at 1 p.m.

Listen to all conversations on the BMCM+AC website.

Listen Now

These conversations will lead into the Faith in Arts Institute, Oct. 13-16, 2021. More details coming soon!

See the description below for information about the 2020 Faith in Arts Institute that was postponed due to COVID-19.

UPDATED MARCH 18, 2020 – This event has been rescheduled for Oct. 13-16, 2021.

Faith in Arts Institute: An Exploration of the Intersections of Art, Faith, and Spirit

May 13-17, 2020

The Faith in Arts Institute is presented by UNC Asheville and Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center with support from the Center for Jewish Studies at UNC Asheville, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UNC Asheville, a grant for the humanities from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Henry Luce Foundation as part of their Theology Responsive Grant program, the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society, Bob and Carol Deutsch, and the Asheville Jewish Community Center.

Join us for four days of workshops, artist talks, readings, performances, exhibitions, contemplative practice and conversation.

  • World premiere of Waves and Particles, a new composition by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Luther Adams, performed by the JACK Quartet
  • Opening of an exhibition on John Cage and Buddhism
  • Mandala and midrash-making workshops
  • Facilitation of interfaith dialogue through objects: a workshop on curating personal objects contributed by institute participants
  • Talks on religion and art in the 21st century and sacred art in secular places as well as secular art in sacred places
  • I hunger for you, directed and choreographed by Guggenheim recipient Kimberly Bartosik
  • Deep listening, beholding, phrase, and embodied contemplative practices

The registration fee for the Faith in Arts Institute is $500. On-campus lodging is available in UNC Asheville’s newest apartment-style residential complex, The Woods, for an additional $350 for four nights.

Member Pricing

Members of UNC Asheville’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) and Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center can attend the Institute for a discounted rate of $225. Please write to to request the discount code to apply at registration.


A limited number of scholarships for emerging artists and scholars are available. Scholarships cover the cost of registration, lodging, and up to $600 in travel expenses. To apply for a scholarship, please send a letter explaining your interest in the institute as well as a recent C.V. to Requests for scholarships should be submitted by Feb. 15, 2020.