About the Conference

November 4–6, 2021
St. David's Episcopal Church


Beauty, Truth, and Goodness

CIVA, Christians in the Visual Arts is thrilled to host the 2021 biennial conference in vibrant downtown Austin, Texas! 


We can’t wait to share this conference with you. It’s like none other before.

Conference at a Glance

  • Local Art Exhibition and Welcome Reception at conference headquarters, St. David's Episcopal Church

  • Explore Groups - Learn More

  • Plenary Sessions 

  • Workshops

  • Paper Presentations

  • Portfolio Reviews

  • Mentoring Sessions

  • Connection and Community

  • Prayer and Worship Time

  • Book Table and Author Signings 

  • Late Late Show

Traveling to Austin

By Plane

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS)

Getting Around 


Street and garage parking available throughout downtown Austin. Hotels may also off guest parking based on individual hotel guidelines. 

Registration / Conference Check In

After you’ve registered for conference we will send updates and conference schedules via email. Please be sure you have whitelisted office@civa.org in your email settings in order to receive our group communications.
Not sure if you’re signed up for CIVA emails? Sign up here.

Once you arrive at the conference opening reception on Thursday evening, November 4th, there will be friendly CIVA faces ready to welcome you.


Lodging for conference is different this year. Please note that lodging costs are not included in the price of registration. Attendees should practice free will and arrange accommodations of their preference. 

There are many hotels near our conference headquarters, St. David's Episcopal Church. Check the map for locations and hotel websites.
  • The Driskill - In the Unbound Collection by Hyatt

  • Omni Austin Hotel Downtown

  • Holiday Inn Express & Suites

  • Hotel Indigo Austin Downtown

  • Hilton Austin

  • JW Marriott Austin

  • The Westin Austin Downtown

  • Courtyard by Marriott Austin

You may have some questions.
Let’s see if we can answer them here!

Will CIVA be reserving a block of rooms at a hotel?

Unfortunately... no. CIVA will not be reserving hotels for our attendees. We believe there are plenty of options for every size, shape, and budget in the downtown Austin area.


Can I book a room with another CIVA attendee?

CIVA will not be facilitating any room shares. However, you are more than welcome to make your own arrangements with those you know. After you register for the conference, you will be invited to a Facebook group specifically for conference where you can chat with fellow attendees and express a desire for a roommate. 


The food options in Austin are just too excellent to ignore, so this year grab a group of CIVA friends and discover the vibrant options in downtown Austin. You’ll have access to food trucks just steps away on 6th street, BBQ, Tex-Mex, and Michelin starred restaurants at your fingertips.

But what about the Coffee & Snacks?!?

Oh don’t you fret! CIVA will have you covered for those in-between times when you need to refuel.  



Our conference sites will have free WiFi for attendees. Be sure to check with your chosen hotel to see if they have your technology needs covered. 


How do I prepare?

First things first- All participants must register in order to attend the conference. Space is limited, so don't drag your feet too long!

Second As noted previously, all attendees will be responsible for their own transportation, lodging and meals. Start planning!

Third Keep an eye out for emails and communications from CIVA with more details and information as we get closer to conference.

What kind of weather should I pack for?

Layers. All the layers. Austin in November can give us anything... 90’s and sticky, cool and sudden showers, all in one day! Texans will tell you, you can get all four seasons in one day.

Ok, it’s time to explore Austin, virtually for now, and get excited!
Check out just a fraction of what our host city has to offer.

Free Austin Visitors Guide (Printed)

The Contemporary Austin 

Mexic-Arte Museum

Ellsworth Kelly’s Austin  at  Blanton Museum of Art 

A Skyspace by James Turrell at The University of Texas

Food Truck Scene

6th Street Neighborhood Guide

Rainey St Neighborhood Guide

Red River Cultural District

Texas State Capitol 

Expanded Conference Contemplation 

Transcendentals are objective features of everything that exists, they are in a sense attributes of God. As God has revealed Himself through three transcendentals, Truth, Beauty, and Goodness, we speak of these transcendentals as being complementary. If something is Good, it is also True and Beautiful. Likewise, if something is True, it is also Good and Beautiful. But when we consider Beauty, apart from her sisters, things begin to get complicated. We are all drawn to Beauty. It is part of our nature. It is a spark of the Divine imparted to us by the Creator. Beauty is a part of God, and as such, it is a way in which we are connected to Him.


The eastern fathers of the Church have contributed much to our understanding of the connection between Beauty and the Arts. We owe much to their thoughts and meditations on the place of beauty in our lives that has helped us understand the value of a theology of Beauty. What we’ve learned is that Beauty has the power to draw us beyond itself and point to its source. When we consider a beautiful painting, we are initially drawn to its superficial aesthetics. But then it should draw us beyond the painted surface to contemplate the Truth and Goodness behind the image.


Of the three transcendentals, Beauty is the one we seem to understand the least. It is easy to see how the pursuit of what is True can lead us to a greater understanding of God. The same applies to Goodness. When we act rightly, we learn more about God and the reality of creation. This is no less true with Beauty. Beauty speaks to us through our imagination, allowing us to perceive reality on an intuitive, spiritual, and poetic level.

We look forward to gathering with you in Austin!