Saturday, April 26, 2008

Easter Lilies
30 x 24 Oil on Linen

Spring brings out the altar boy in me. I always thought I wanted to do religious paintings but whenever I create a figure composition it seems anachronistic at best, or, at worst, insipid. Illustrating a story from the bible is one thing but bringing a sense of genuine spirituality to it is something else. When Easter season arrives however, and lilies appear, still lifes with religious themes come easily to me. Bread and grapes represent the last supper, a wicker basket could look back to Palm Sunday or ahead to the wood of the cross, the rising pure white lilies signify the resurrection of Christ as He emerges from the tomb. For me it is powerful imagery and I've painted it a few times. But this subject matter also appeals to me as a secular theme. It's difficult to see a crucifixion or a raising of Lazarus as anything other than a religious painting, but a still life enables me to broaden my audience. Easter Lilies, for example, won a prize at the Salmagundi Club in an exhibition of paintings with a floral theme. I don't know if the people who own this painting bought it for religious or purely aesthetic reasons...and it doesn't was created to appeal on both levels.....

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