Via Matris

10 Feb

My newest work Via Matris (Way of the Mother) is a 10″X10″ canvas paired with a 10″X10″X10″ triangle canvas that will be framed together.

The term Via Matris comes from a Catholic Devotion to the Mother of Sorrows.

The lower panel is an Annunciation scene.  Archangel Gabriel appears to Mary, and the Holy spirit is upon the Blessed Virgin. On Gabriel’s body are tattoos telling the story of Christ’s life.  There is also a picture foreshadowing the Coronation of  the Virgin Mary where she would become the Queen of Heaven.

The upper panel is a Crucifixion scene with Virgin Mary and Mary Magdalene on either side of the cross.  To the side of the Virgin sits an onlooking rabbit, a traditional Easter symbol, to the side of Mary Magdalene sits an egg, also an Easter symbol, a symbol for new life.

I really liked this article on Wikipedia on Mary Magdalene and the Easter egg tradition:

For centuries, it has been the custom of many Christians to share dyed and painted eggs, particularly on Easter Sunday. The eggs represent new life, and Christ bursting forth from the tomb. Among Eastern Orthodox Christians; this sharing is accompanied by the proclamation “Christ is risen!” and the response “Truly He is risen!”.

One tradition concerning Mary Magdalene says that following the death and resurrection of Jesus, she used her position to gain an invitation to a banquet given by Emperor Tiberius. When she met him, she held a plain egg in her hand and exclaimed “Christ is risen!” Caesar laughed, and said that Christ rising from the dead was as likely as the egg in her hand turning red while she held it. Before he finished speaking, the egg in her hand turned a bright red, and she continued proclaiming the Gospel to the entire imperial house.

Another version of this story can be found in popular belief, mostly in Greece. It is believed that after the Crucifixion, Mary Magdalene and the Virgin Mary put a basket full of eggs at the foot of the cross. There, the eggs were painted red by the blood of the Christ. Then, Mary Magdalene brought them to Tiberius Caesar.


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