Monday, April 21, 2014

The Day After Easter

“We cannot live for ourselves alone. Our lives are connected by a thousand invisible threads, and along these sympathetic fibers, our actions run as causes and return to us as results.” 
 Herman Melville

   The relationship that exists between the maker and the made is a mystery. I am a maker of things so I know this relationship, but I don’t understand it. Artists are mystery carriers.

For The Denial, I posed as Peter- a selfie triptych of reference photos. The finished piece was to be a black and white grisaille on a textured panel, but as I studied the photos I realized- the ‘selfie’ is the point. I am Peter, declaring, “Thou art the Christ!” one moment and denying Him the next… from declarative statements to desperate shouts.


The Denial

   What does it mean to be human? To know and be known? To be capable of knowing that there exists the unknowable? To be human is to embody mystery. But to ask for help requires a strength most men do not seem to carry… the strength to say, ‘I am human.’ Instead, men seek other words- a word of affirmation or confirmation or consolation. Perhaps that is why The Word became flesh. Perhaps God became man so that one Man could show other men how to ask for help.

   We never know what a day may call forth, or what a moment may ask of us... as Emily Dickinson said, "till we are called to rise." As Chesterton observed, Jesus saw honest men wrapped in thieves bodies. Peter, faced with exposure, denied Jesus. The thief on the cross, exposed to the world, acknowledged Jesus.

   To be human is to make mistakes, recognize the mistake and begin again.

   To be human is to be Simon Peter on the day after Easter and say, "I'm going fishing."

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