First Friday Guest Artists and Live Music
A few times a year, our congregation hosts fine art and music in coordination with Harrisonburg's own Arts Council of the Valley. CMC is one of more than 30 local organizations that regularly host a First Fridays Downtown events to cultivate a community around visual art and music. Some artist's work we have hosted includes:
- Lisa Schirch and Julia Merkel's show, "The Way of Sorrow." Schirch explored laments, contradictions, and healing in "a tribe called Mennonite" using traditional Mennonite art forms. Merkel's large format drawings and sculptural objects in "Absence/Presence" drew from a profound loss. Together they invited viewers to reflect on identity, grief, healing, and recovery.
- Madeline Miller's show, "Kinship", illustrated the intimate connection between trees and humans.
- Merridy Gnagey's show, "Land", featured oil painting evoking our local landscape.
- Steven Johnson's show, "Vernal Pools: Life Just Below the Surface.", used photography to capture the intricate biodiversity just below the surface of the temporary ponds that form in our forests.
- Anna Westfall's sculptures, which aimed to create the essence and energy found in the natural world while speaking to human perception and understanding of its character.
- The music of Cahoots, a Harrisonburg-based Americana band that writes and performs old fashioned music while seeking to resist the sirens of nostalgia and irony.
Our building is home to beautiful works of art, including stained glass installations that hold significant symbolic meaning for our congregation. The tree icon, centered high at the front of our Sanctuary is our unofficial logo and is featured on many CMC print materials. The works currently on display are:
- Prayer, located in our Prayer Alcove near the front of the Sanctuary, was created by Zac Nafziger.
- Welcome, located in our Fellowship Hall, is another stained glass work by Zac Nafziger. It was commissioned and installed at the conclusion of our "Everyone Welcome" renovation project in 2015.
- Blessings Flowing Waters is a collaboration between stained glass artist Zac Nafziger and woodworker, Rhett Miles. It is located in our Prayer Alcove.
- Tree, is a stained glass work by Jay D. Kain installed in our sanctuary in 1991.
- Icons, a series of paint on woodworks hanging in our Fellowship Hall, were imagined by Kathryn Fenton and inspired by the Anabaptist faith and traditional Orthodox Church icons.