Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Alabasterers

Another great show currently up in New York is "Object of Devotion," an exhibition of English alabaster sculptures from the 13th-15th c. now showing at MoBiA, the Museum of Biblical Art. Images online are few, so these two will have to suffice: Incarnation/ Annunciation and Parliament of Heaven and a Scene from the Life of Saint Edmund, still in vibrant color - both from the 15th century. The former is striking not only for the unusual juxtaposition of the four virtues known as Daughters of God and the annunciation, but just look at the size of that Jesus! The latter is thrilling not only for its scene of everyday life but the fact that this scenes happens against a theatrical background, the ground on which the wheat seems to grow is really a green cloth painted with flowers... and of course, peeking out over the top of the scrim of the world and its clueless denizens, the saint on his way to martyrdom in the golden light of eternity.

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