Sunday, March 28, 2010

Women the Morning of the Third Day

Title: Femmes au Matin du 3e Jour (Women the morning of the third day)

Artist: Macha Chmakoff

Medium: Oil on canvas

Size: 81 x 65 cm

Date: c. 2008

Location: Private collection

Mark 16:1-3 When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus' body. Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb and they asked each other, "Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?"

The women return to the tomb to finish the burial preparations for Jesus that had been omitted due to he onset of Sabbath two nights previous. The spices they bought were not part of a traditional burial for everyone, but would have been used only for the bodies of special persons. In other words, their reason for coming was to serve Jesus. In the Gospel of Mark, women occupy a central position in the mission and message of Jesus as examples of model disciples. These women frequently serve as triumphant examples of faith and sacrifice in contrast to unbelieving men.

Macha Chmakoff is a French psychologist, author, and painter, who studied theology at the Université Catholique de Paris. Chmakoff’s work reflects her belief that society is marked by the divorce between religion and spirituality, and the Christian religion proposes to guide the believer into the fullness of his humanity. To become fully human takes awareness of an emptiness, and Christianity provides the tools required to penetrate the source of this emptiness. More of her work can be viewed on her website at

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