Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Face of Jesus

My family and I spent some time in Philadelphia visiting my father last week. While there, we went to the Philadelphia Art Museum and saw the current special exhibition called "Rembrandt and the Face of Jesus." It was quite interesting. The focus of the exhibition was that Rembrandt painted Christ in more human motifs than had been done before. Up until this time (17th century), it was permitted only to paint the face of Christ in iconic and more god-like styles - but Rembrandt broke with this tradition. It was interesting to see what he did, especially with his two favorites subjects: the Raising of Lazarus and the Road to Emmaus. My favorite, though, was Jesus and the woman caught in adultery.

But I wish there had been a bit more exploration of why Rembrandt broke with tradition as he did. As a Dutch Protestant, did that play a part? The only reference to Rembrandt's religious belief was in discussing a picture he painted of Christ preaching, which spoke of the importance of preaching and the Word in the Reformation. But I wonder if Luther's Theology of the Cross had any influence? What about Cranach? Durer? I really know next to nothing about art (except that I like to look at pictures!) so any of you out there who stumble across this blog know anything about this?

In other news, it's good to be home. No more travels for a while. Have a busy week as we prepare for school to start and try to squeeze in all we can the last week of summer! But I have found that once school starts, things get more manageable. Summer is so busy and hectic; but the routine and schedule of school settles things down a bit. So September and October are actually (usually) good months for me. I am looking forward to them.

No comments: