Is beauty really “in the eye of the beholder”?
One of his arguments for the objectivity of beauty is the fact that beauty is one of the three classical transcendentals (truth, goodness, and beauty) which find their basis in God. In other words, God is beauty itself, which means beauty is as objectively real as God is.
“The buildings we design to focus our attention on God should reflect his beauty. And not just because it would be nice, but because God can use that to reveal himself to us. […] This is something that for large parts Christian history we did understand.”
The modern art movement intentionally cast off the “old traditions of civilization, including religion,” says Holdsworth, and “transformed art into something that is self-gratifying, confusing, relativistic, and often utilitarian. […] This points back to this idea that we are the masters of beauty; that we define what beauty is.”
As a result, modern art “definitely doesn’t belong in the spaces we set aside to encounter God.”
Christians, he concludes, should “commission Christian designers who will allow the Holy Spirit to create beautiful buildings that people will want to visit generations from now, whether they’re Christian or not, instead of these modernist misfortunes that nobody will want to step foot in 30 years after they go out of fashion.”