Sunday, March 14, 2010

The Shadow of the Crucifixion

Title: The Shadow of the Crucifixion

Artist: Daniel Bonnell

Medium: Oil crayons

Size: 28 x 35 cm

Date: c. 2006

Location: Private Collection.

Mark 15:29-32 Those who passed by hurled insults at him, shaking their heads and saying, "So! You who are going to destroy the temple and build it in three days, come down from the cross and save yourself!"

In the same way the chief priests and the teachers of the law mocked him among themselves. "He saved others," they said, "but he can't save himself! Let this Christ, this King of Israel, come down now from the cross, that we may see and believe." Those crucified with him also heaped insults on him.

Some people observing an crucifixion would normally curse those being executed, and they did not spare Jesus from this abuse. Further, many ancient writers would often employ irony, and Mark is no exception, reporting unintended truth in the words of Jesus’ enemies. Mark speaks to the doubts his original readers may have harbored: Indeed, Lord, why did you not save yourself? Bonnell employs startling imagery to portray those who mock Christ from the shadow of the cross.

Daniel Bonnell (b. 1955) is an American painter and graduate of the Atlanta College of Art. He furthered his studies under the French Dominican Monk Pere Couturier, who usher such great painters as Henri Matisse and Fernand Leger into creating sacred art. His work can be found in several church and private collections, and in several notable publications. Most recently, a number of his paintings were selected to be in the Mosaic Holy Bible. The bold nature of his work, his subject matter and use of darks and lights, combine to give a very powerful look at redemption. Daniel’s contributions to the Mosaic Bible can be viewed at

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