This collection of Last Supper icons shares several characteristics found in the original painted by Andrey Rublev, Russia, 15th century. The original icon gives a “Historical” representation of the Last Supper, as Christ celebrated it with His disciples. The disciples around the table illustrate how modern last supper icons are inclusive.
Twelve people sit assembled at a round table. The scratchy lines of pattern on the table allude to conversations taking place between them. The white oval table to the host at Eucharist; they will all take common nourishment from it. The artist Rublev has expressed the relationships of the disciples through hand gestures and how the bodies face one another. A fine net of invisible threads holds them together in a relationship.
ALL PEOPLE EAT TOGETHER in LAST SUPPER ICONS
The Last Supper event is not only about Christians and Christ. It is our meal of the day filled with crisis, turmoil, contradiction, and decision. At the table we find ourselves overwhelmed with the need for spiritual nourishment, for what is coming. We need to learn to eat together again. Fast food and the disintegration of family life has made eating together a thing of the past.
Despite our failure to gather for food, sharing, and conversation, our human need to be noticed has not evaporated. We want to experience God’s redeeming love for us and inside us. It is my understanding we cannot do it alone, but only through communion.
I have expanded the idea of the last supper to include other nationalities and dinner together. The African female priests and Buddha at the Last Supper are examples of pushing the classic boundaries of the original icon and its meaning. My intuition overrides the tradition, telling me we can learn to live and eat together, newly defined as one family.
FAMILIES AROUND THE WORLD in LAST SUPPER ICONS
The last supper icon collection opened a new door for me. The spirit of God is greater than any of us can imagine. We are children discussing trying to grasp the idea of God with a scientist or great theologian. There are commonalities between different faiths and practices. We are diverse and wonderful creatures, all looking for an illusive ‘God’ in different ways.
I used the original Last Supper Icon as a motif, a symbol to express what I understood as the meaning of community and sharing. To eat and live as one people in harmony, as a family, is one of Christ’s Great teachings. In this series of 8 Icons, the African Last Super, the Japanese women, and the Muslim Last Super I have removed the Christ figure. I understand Christ is present always and “IS” the table we all come to. He is the “host” in the Eucharist. There are 8 nations represented in the series, the importance of breaking bread together is a message for the entire world and all of us who share it.
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