PICTURING THE PASSION: ‘Christ taking leave of his Mother’ by Lorenzo Lotto
The mystery of a fragile limpid God meekly nailed to a humble piece of wood out of His extra – ordinary love for fallen mankind is way too powerful an image to be ignored by art!
The Passion Narrative of Christ has dominated the world of painting, sculpture, music, theatre and other forms of art for ages. From Giotto to Rembrandt, every artist imagined and represented the betrayal, flagellation, humiliation, affliction and the brutal execution of Jesus in a unique way. Through their painful emotions they evoked the faithful to identify with Christ in His suffering and thus share in His salvation. Let us then journey with Jesus through His passion through 12 paintings during this season of Lent.
The first in this series is a heart wrenching farewell between Christ and His Mother. This event is brought to breath by Lorenzo Lotto, an Italian painter, in the year 1521. It marks the beginning of the impeding climax of Christ mission i.e. His passion, death and resurrection. This episode is not accounted for in the Gospel but rather it is narrated at length in the ‘Meditation of the Life of Christ’ by Pseudo Bonaventure.
The sun is low on the horizon and dusk has settled over the land. After His supper at Bethany in the house of Martha and Mary, Christ visits His Mother in order to announce that His time had come. He kneels before her in filial obedience and with solemn sadness says ‘Most Beloved Mother…..the time of redemption is coming. Now all things said of me will be fulfilled and they will do to me what they wish.’ (Chap 72 of the Meditations of the Life of Christ).
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