Happy Thanksgiving! – “Mary Devouring Her Son”

I hope this post finds you with friends and family, preparing or consuming some sort of food. After all, that’s what Thanksgiving’s about, eh? Let’s not forget about the animals and people who have sacrificed their lives so we can celebrate!

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Mmmmm tastes like bread and wine. Human flesh you say? No, seems perfectly edible to me, would you like to try some?

All jokes aside (bonus points if you got the obvious one), this picture is one with a story behind it. I made this while in italy, in my printmaking class. Our teacher, Lucy encouraged us to come up with a “series” idea we could follow through the course. I already had the surrealist inclination to turn around the subjects of pieces of art I liked (Tenthousand Waves), and so I took that notion and ran with it.

Since I was in Italy I found myself gravitating towards the subject of Madonna & Child/Mary and Her Son. It came to be through my second print, “Madonna and Child – After Kathe Kollwitz”. Lucy had us study prints from Japanese woodcuts, and Kathe Kollwitz’s work as two differing style references. I chose her painting “The Survivors” and focused in on the central mother figure holding the child, and reversed the blindfold, adding layers of depth and meaning. I continued this approach through the course to make a series of prints (Madonna, Pieta, Womb) including this one.

“Mary Devouring Her Son” is a tribute to one of my favorite artists, Francisco Goya. Our boy Goya is fun because apart from your typical Spanish Portraits-and-Scenery, he’s got really awesome, dark, fantastical Black Paintings about everyone going absolutely mad. About the inspiration piece, from WikiPaintings:

This painting was completed of the walls of his dining room, and is a rendition of Saturn, the Roman mythological character, who, fearing that his children would one day overthrow him, ate each one of them upon their births.

Sounds like a perfectly reasonable way to avoid a coup, if you ask me. Until the Chosen One bursts through your abdomen with a vengeance. I think the story of the Christian Father and Heir to The Throne went a little differently? We’re not symbolically eating the body of God’s Son to prevent Him from being King, we’re celebrating His Sacrifice!

Sacrifices are tasty!

Purchase an original print of this here!

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