Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

Buy New
  • List Price: $24.99
  • Save: $7.54 (30%)
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
Usually ships within 1 to 3 weeks.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Refractions: A Journey of... has been added to your Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Refractions: A Journey of Faith, Art, and Culture Paperback – February 1, 2009

4.8 out of 5 stars 31 customer reviews

See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
New from Used from
"Please retry"
$14.96 $12.99

Practical help for prayer
Praying the Bible
Praying the Bible
Praying the Bible
$17.45 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. Usually ships within 1 to 3 weeks. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • Refractions: A Journey of Faith, Art, and Culture
  • +
  • Art for God's Sake: A Call to Recover the Arts
Total price: $21.87
Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews


"An artist with the craftsmanship and global appeal of Makoto Fujimura comes along all too rarely. Such an artist with a strong faith commitment who both inspires and leads other artists--now that's really rare. Mako is a fine writer. I learned, and was provoked and frequently moved by these reflections that through Mako's eye have become unique refractions." --Philip Yancey: author of more than twenty books, including Prayer: Does It Make Any Difference? and What's So Amazing About Grace?


"Like his art, Makoto Fujimura's essays harbor a depth of luminosity that requires and rewards patient contemplation. This collection is an important contribution to the conversation between faith and art and between art and our beautiful, broken world."

Interested in the Audiobook Edition?
If you’re the author, publisher, or rights holder of this book, let ACX help you produce the audiobook.Learn more.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: NavPress; First Edition (US) First Printing edition (February 15, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1600063012
  • ISBN-13: 978-1600063015
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 0.5 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #54,527 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By C. Burkitt on June 12, 2009
Format: Paperback
When I received Makoto Fujimura's Refractions: A Journey of Faith, Art, and Culture, I was wowed by the evident care that had gone into it's design. It is the loveliest paperback book I've ever seen. I expected to find it interesting, perhaps a little challenging, and certainly full of beauty.

But life intervened, first in the form of a traffic collision, then in the form of a layoff from my job. I found myself with more time on my hands than I was accustomed to having, but the last thing I wanted to do was read a collection of meditations by a Japanese-American artist. I read some, found myself foundering, and put it aside. Then, driven by a sense of responsibility to the publisher for sending me a free copy, I tried again. And again. And again.

I found after all my trying that the book was better than I wanted to admit. It isn't that I don't like art. It is that I do like logical, well-reasoned argument. I like a straight highway and a car with plenty of horsepower. Instead, I was forced to meander on a country path through unfamiliar landscapes, never knowing quite where I was going or how I was going to get there. It struck me that this was the sort of book my artistic wife would like. I'm not sure she has ever read a book straight through. She reads the beginning, jumps into the middle, skips to the end, backtracks, quits for a week, resumes from a different spot than where she left off, and generally leaves me dumbfounded. If I tried to read like that, my brain would turn to pudding.

(Full disclosure: My wife reminded me that she read The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck straight through and enjoyed it immensely. Incontrovertible evidence that she is a better person than I.)

Refractions is a book of meditations.
Read more ›
Comment 46 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Makoto Fujimura is a contemporary artist whose home and studio are near Ground Zero. Out of a response to the attacks on 9/11, he began to set aside time every Saturday to write. This was a time to process and reflect on the emotions and changes in his life and city. The result of these writings is this beautifully crafted book.

In recent years, we have seen a renewed interest in the relationship between art and theology, and Fujimura offers a significant voice in that conversation. The book is a collection of essays loosely joined by the topics of faith, art, and culture, as the title suggests. While some books seem redundant after the first few chapters, the unique subject and fresh thoughts of each essay pulled me forward into every page turn.

What I appreciate most is the awareness that Fujimura displays of his soul and surroundings. He describes this awareness in the book's first essay:

"The process of creating renews my spirit, and I find myself attuned to the details of life rather than being stressed by being overwhelmed. I find myself listening rather than shouting into the void. Creating art opens my heart to see and listen to the world around me, opening a new vista of experience. This is the gift of the 'second wind.' Such a state taps into what I now call eternal timefullness."

While I was able to engage and be shaped by his thoughts throughout, it was this awareness that challenged me the most. After finishing the final chapter yesterday, I closed the book and opened my journal. With infinite access to information and social connection, all of us would do well to be a little more connected to our own selves.
Comment 17 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Refractions: A Journey of Faith, Art, and Culture collects essays written by Makoto Fujimura to artists from 2004 to 2006. Living in post-9/11 New York City, Fujimura challenges artists: How does your art recognize the brokenness around you? How does your art offer hope and redemption in the midst of it?

I began this book months ago. The essays demand to be read contemplatively, even devotionally. I savored it morsel by morsel, letting each piece roll on my tongue, slide down my throat. As I digested it, it became part of me and part of my art.

Makoto leads artists toward art that recovers dignity and beauty without becoming sentimental or ignoring the hurt and brokeness of the world. In fact, the path toward beauty moves through brokenness.

He encourages artists to take the long view of their art in a time when fifteen minutes of fame, instant recognition, and "[peddling] our goods to find significance and survival" rule the art world. "Artists who labor to develop their craft, artists who are committed to a longer view of their art, suffer" (p. 142). But our art isn't for fame, recognition or even significance. It's to glorify God and offer a sacrament to this world. It is to bring God's power of resurrection to the dead.

To do this, artists need the Church to invest in them spiritually and artistically. They need the Church to walk alongside them, to hold them up, even, to support them (emotionally, spiritually, and financially). Fujimura calls for an expanded role for the Church--not just appreciating the arts and using them in their worship (although these things are good), but to train artists and encourage them.

Fujimura's writing awakens hope for the discouraged artist. And who among us is not or has not been discouraged? I read this at a time where I realized I had a choice: to take the easier (although not easy) and marketable road of art or to take the longer, sufferable road.

I choose the longer road.
Comment 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?