With an economy of strokes made using a Sharpie Marker upon vinyl on paper, I tried to capture the simplicity of the shepherd's most natural gesture of solemnity and piety that such a momentous encounter as seeing the Christ Child, Immanuel, called for. . . Unadulterated Worship.
I've done several church related works of art over the decades. The interpretation of biblical verses and translation into visual representation has been a challenge I've undertaken since childhood. I've developed a style that points to the power of line drawing and strength in form and mannerism captured. The urge to depict this imagery in the simplest possible form for me has come in my now sixth decade of expressing biblical scenes many varied scales, mediums and manner. In this illustration, a simple man is captured in a most profound gesture in the simplest of ways which in my artistic journey thus far, I've learned how to do.
My association with the Catholic Church from childhood has had a profound and intimate influence on my life as I've been a part especially of it's educational institutions bar eleven years of my life thus far, (from 12 years of primary & secondary schooling to 28 years of secondary school art tutoring). I enjoy teaching in the Christian based setting because of the freedom I have to share ideas about Jesus of Nazareth to the students I interact with every day. It is what supersedes all things for me and guides my curriculum and style of teaching. Ephesians 6:10-20 speaks to my every day existence. Ironically, since late October 2019 I've been on sick leave due to a ruptured knee ligament injury I sustained playing in our country's national Teachers Union Footbal League. Hopefully, come September, I'll be back up and running and ready for the challenges of the post-covid 19 "new" school academic year. I'm currently unable to genuflect without considerable pain in my right knee. It's no small irony, that the tumultuous experiences we've all borne witness to since the murder of George Floyd, somehow pivots on the act of a man representing authority "genuflecting" on the victim's neck in an abusive manner that led to the horrendous passing of what appeared to be a subdued, detained crime suspect. . .the life of a living soul, caught on video, was snuffed out by a senior officer of the law. . .
All around the world, masses of protesting folk imitate the stance of that murderous act, but instead in solidarity with the symbolic gesture of protesting against the injustice of the murderous act. It seems an honourable gesture on the part of the protesting masses.
Ephesians 6:10-20 reminds me to be wary of "the crowd" and what passes for "normal" and "acceptable" and what's "popular".
I am wary of the act of "taking a knee" for ANYTHING BUT THE PRESENCE OF GOD !!!
As I am emboldened to wear the armour of the Good Shepherd, which in Paul's eleven scribed verses I'm encouraged to do, I return to some the First imitators of Moses' most wondrous encounter with the Burning Bush found in the New Testament, who sought after the Baby Jesus in obedience to the Angel's message to them.
With an economy of strokes made using a Sharpie Marker upon vinyl on paper, I tried to capture the simplicity of the shepherd's most natural gesture of solemnity and piety that such a momentous encounter as finding the Christ Child naturally called for. . . Unadulterated Worship.
Ephesians 6:10-20 speaks of discernment. . .if possessing that power of knowing that only the Holy Spirit can help us decipher. . .
Why would I take a knee? What is this which presents itself to me? Why am I doing this?
To whom am I bowing?
Metaphorically, figuratively and physically, here's an act that resonates profoundly and challenges our understanding of the First Commandment. My sister reminded me of this three weeks ago. She testified to a strong message she received from the Lord through prayer, that He was not pleased with this "taking a knee" craze that the entire world has been about of late. On a personal level, I have struggled to comprehend the act of "Worship" and the physical characteristics of prayer and worship in "public" as opposed to the proverbial "locked in private a room" type of prayer to the Lord. My sister's message shook me to the core. My knee injury and the desire for healing has since taken on a new kind of importance and incentive. I want to walk and run normally and in full strength again, but also, I want to "take a knee" for the Lord Jesus Christ of Nazareth in my "Full Armour" again. . . Spiritually and Physically too, in equal measure. . .and to do so in determined focus upon Him only.
Praise and Blessed be His Holy Name.
Andre Stewart Reyes
Mixed Media, Sharpie Marker upon Vinyl on paper
6" x 9"
Facebook: Andre Reyes
San Juan, Trinidad
Direct Commissions: Painting, Drawing & Calligraphy
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