April 4-8, 2013
With Dana Gioia
When you lift a glass of wine, you hold in your hand an alchemy of wind, sunlight, and soil, of history, tradition, and craft—a profound union of the human and natural orders. In this sense winemaking is like art making: both demand passion and drive, knowledge of tradition and attention to detail, and a disciplined understanding of materials and physical processes. For those who love them, both repay study—the more attentively we experience them, the more deeply we can enjoy them. The process of fermentation—whether in oak barrels or an artist’s mind—can transform ordinary materials to something timeless, even transcendent.
How can we develop a richer experience of both wine and art? How do you distinguish the plonk from the grand cru, the merely good from the enduring? And what about the theological element? Faith, too, requires patience, time, study, and lived experience, and is enriched by a deeper understanding of the created world. What are the parallels between the life of faith and the love of art and wine?
During our long weekend together, we’ll meet with winemakers and artists; tour wineries and art collections; and meet for meals, fine bottles, and conversation on the rich and fascinating parallels between art, faith, and viticulture. Above all, we’ll come away with a more deeply informed sense of how to foster the sort of creative ferment that can renew a culture.