The Lost Discipline of Bible Reading -by Tom Morris

I can recall an occasion when members of a well-known sect knocked on my door and offered some materials designed to help me “study the Bible.”  This sect is known (i) for its zeal in “witnessing” door to door, and (ii) for its denial of a number of the key teachings of the Christian faith. …

The Big Picture with Darcy Weir – The Deposition from the Cross

In our final session of The Big Picture, we considered images of the Deposition from the Cross, the Pietà, the Entombment, and the Resurrection. We discussed the significance of Van der Weyden’s Deposition, considered several aspects of Piero della Francesca’s Resurrection of Christ, and marveled at the hallucinogenic quality of Grünewald’s Resurrection of Christ from the Isenheim Altarpiece–among other things. -tw

The Big Picture with Darcy Weir – “To The Cross”

In SMC Big Picture #9, we viewed a number of images concentrating on the Passion of Christ, from his arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane to the Crucifixion.  Masaccio’s Holy Trinity, a case study in perspective, was given special attention. Videos: on Lorenzo Lotto’s Christ Carrying the Cross: on Masaccio’s Holy Trinity: -tw

The Big Picture with Darcy Weir – Lazarus

In this Big Picture, we focus on the resurrection of Lazarus, as recounted in John’s Gospel.  Special attention is placed on the rivalry between Michelangelo and Raphael, and how Sebastiano del Piombo (Michelangelo’s protégé) used Michelangelo’s drawings to create his Resurrection of Lazarus, and thereby entered into direct competition with Raphael in his version of the Transfiguration.  Both paintings…

The Big Picture with Darcy Weir – Miracles and Transfiguration

In The Big Picture #6, we consider the artistic treatment of several of Jesus’s miracles, his Transfiguration, and Peter’s Confession of Faith. Particular emphasis is placed on the political significance of Perugino’s treatment of Peter’s Confession in the Sistine Chapel, as well as the careful preparations Raphael made before painting his last masterpiece, The Transfiguration. -tw

The Big Picture with Darcy Weir – The Good Samaritan

In the fifth session of the Big Picture, we continue studying the teachings of Jesus, and particularly his use of parables.  We focus on the parable of The Good Samaritan and the parables of the 15th chapter of Luke:  the parable of the lost sheep, the lost coin, the lost son.  Rembrandt’s treatment of the…

The Big Picture with Darcy Weir – The Teachings of Jesus

In the 4th session of The Big Picture, we consider Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount (Matt. 5-7) and his Parables of the Kingdom (Matt. 13.)  A particular emphasis is placed on images of The Sower as conceived first by Jean François Millet, and then repeatedly by Vincent Van Gogh, who used Millet’s painting as a…

The Big Picture with Darcy Weir – The Temptation of Christ

In The Big Picture #3, we studied the Temptation of Christ as recounted in Matthew’s Gospel.  Beginning in the 12th century with Byzantine mosaics, we went on to consider the temptation as treated by Duccio, Botticelli, and other artists from the Italian Renaissance and Baroque periods.  We then considered works from the northern school, from…

The Big Picture with Darcy Weir – John the Baptist & The Baptism of Christ

In this second session of The Big Picture, we study how artists and sculptors from the 14th to the 19th century envisioned John the Baptist and the Baptism of Christ.  Along the way, we observe the sfumato technique of Leonardo and his followers, and the chiaroscuro technique made popular by Caravaggio. -tw