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Jill Sim’s statue of a naked blue Jesus, entitled “Blue Christ” is one of many works of modern art in St John’s church, just across the road from Waterloo station in London.To my mind it’s the most striking and memorable of them all. After seeing it when I was at the church for a Sea of Faith conference, I just had to come back with my camera on another day!
Here’s what Ms Sim says about her 1999 masterpiece:
“When asked why my Christ is blue, I usually answer that it feels right. Blue has a special significance for me. It also reminds me of the renaissance paintings I saw as a child. I like the quote from Kandinsky “The deeper the blue becomes, the more strongly it calls man towards the infinite” -the colour of the heavens. The same colour we picture to ourselves when we hear the sound of the word heaven.
The pose I have chosen embodies the fear Jesus must have felt as a man on earth. It demonstrates an interior as well as an exterior crucifixion. A picture of the struggles we all have to confront.
He is naked because he is being humiliated and the account of his sufferings includes the fact that ‘His raiment was taken from him’. To have him clothed was a Victorian idea of modesty. I wanted a Christ that was a mortal man with mortal feelings and frailty. I wanted to show his fear and his humbleness and his ability to transcend his persecutors.
I collected thorns for his crown whilst artist in residence in a monastery in Kosova/Serbia – a land of conflict.
The shape that appears on the base of the piece is a mandoria, an early Christian symbol. It is created when 2 circles overlap, making an ‘almond’. Traditionally it represents the place where spirit and matter meet, – heaven and earth – conscious and unconscious. It is a spiritually powerful place.”
Cerezo Barredo is another artist who likes using blue! (deleted)
Related Zingcreed Post:
Naked Jesus – a cock and bull story?