Some of you may recall that I have already painted this particular icon of Saint Christopher at an icon workshop led by Suzanne Schleck in the spring of 2015. I especially love the swirls of water echoed in the clothes of St. Christopher and the colorful red sky.
After arriving in Denver, it seemed appropriate to paint the image again as a meditation on how God, the Saints, and the Angels have cared for us and protected us in our moves.
Additionally, I have been meditating on racism, my own and the evidence of it I see in our nation. What can I do to help quiet this beast that attacks us on all sides?
When I paint the images of Jesus, the Saints, and the Angels, I know that I am supposed to project the figures of transfigured beings. But why is it that “transfigured” beings are usually depicted as White, Northern Europeans? Repeating those features and surrounding them with golden haloes does not seem to say that all God’s creatures are beautiful just as they are, no matter what their skin color happens to be.
So. I decided to paint Jesus and Saint Christopher with dark skin. In truth, there is no evidence to say that their skin was otherwise.
May the Peace of God be with you.