On Monday May 6, 2013, Cairn University hosted a 10th Anniversary Celebration for White Stone Gallery on campus. The day began with a public recognition made by University President Dr. Todd Williams in Chapel. Derek and Susan Hooks were invited as honored guests to attend Chapel that morning and were thanked by the student body.
That evening, selected guests of honor attended a private dinner in the Café, which included a program with a musical performance by Ruth Naomi Floyd and various words of appreciation by guests and close friends of White Stone such as artists Makoto Fujimura, Joey Tomasonni, Ted Prescott, Dawn Baker, Ruth Naomi Floyd, and President Williams. Guests appreciated the opportunity to honor the Hooks for the impact they have had in the lives of artists who are Christians and in the arts culture of the greater Philadelphia region. A dessert reception followed in the Gallery where the group was joined by faculty members and students from Cairn’s art classes.
In his comments, Makoto Fujimura pointed to the work of White Stone as a “milestone in terms of a regional [group] doing a significant work [in the arts] that has never been done before.” He highlighted the partnership between White Stone and Cairn, saying that White Stone does its work “in a way that is so perfect for this school, a school that is dedicated to biblical thinking a mission.” He said that the Hooks are examples of those Christians who are involved in the arts, “not so we can feel good about ourselves, but it truly for the next generation, to liberate the next generation of artists, curators, and gallerists from the bondage of decay and to bring us into this glorious freedom of the children of God.”
White Stone has played a critical role in the inception and implementation of Cairn’s Arts Initiative over the past several years. Cairn appreciates the work that Derek and Susan Hooks are doing in culture shaping and their commitment to excellence in craftsmanship and to the Lord. They are catalysts for the intersection between faith and the arts in the Philadelphia area and beyond. In their 10-year history, White Stone Gallery has come alongside many artists to develop them and their work. In addition, they have come alongside Cairn in its Arts Initiative.
Cairn is honored to host exhibits on campus that are curated by White Stone Gallery and to serve as their “extension gallery.” Derek and Susan Hooks have been integral in helping Cairn establish its vision for an integrated gallery on campus. We look forward to continued partnership with them and to the opportunities we will have to open the campus to the community so that they may enjoy the works from White Stone Gallery.