Ten Marvelous and Controversial Paintings of Jesus Christ
Jesus Christ has been depicted throughout history through artistic mediums like statues and paintings. There are a lot of stories to know about Jesus Christ, and the exciting thing about these representations is that various artists translate the story into an art form.
Without any doubt, Jesus has an important theme in art history. Art used to be costly in the early days, so people only immortalized vital themes on statues and canvases.
Thus, religious art is a vast part of art history. Here are many important art pieces that depict Jesus.
Christ of Saint John on the Cross by Salvador Dali
You probably know the artist Salvador Dali due to his famous Barcelona cathedral Sagrada Familia. A lesser-known fact is that he also made a painting of Jesus on the Cross. His perspective was remarkable, where Jesus floated between earth and heaven.
In the image, we can see pitch-black darkness behind. Dali not only wanted to underline the significance of the Cross but also the man who hanged on it. The main inspiration behind this painting is the St. John of the Cross Crucifixion sketch (ca. 1550)
The Transfiguration by Raphael
This painting is the final artwork of Raphael. He was praised as one of the most significant religious artists ever to live.
The Transfiguration is made with fine details, and it is a profound painting depicting Jesus at Mount Tabor, joined by Elijah and Moses. Also, in this painting, the Apostles attempt to heal a sick child, which is possible only with Jesus Christ's presence.
The painting is filled with resonance and deep meaning, and artistically it can be said as the tour de force of sheer passion and craft. This painting was kept beside Raphael's bed at death, representing the proper culmination of master technique and skill.
Christ Crucified by Diego Valazquez
The famous painting Christ Crucified was available in 1632. The king of Spain, Philip IV, requested the painting. It depicts Jesus' crucifixion in a more understated manner than his many other works during the same time.
Velazquez used to make many nude studies when he spent some time in Rome, which he used in his works later, such as Apollo at the Joseph's Tunic and the Forge of Vulcan. However, with Christ Crucified, the image is minimalist, and it pairs down and feels very respectful.
There isn't any supporting scene or other subjects. The painting was completed in Spain after returning from Italy in 1631. Currently, it is available to see in Museo del Prado, Madrid.
Crucifixion by Francis Bacon
Critics thought it a more controversial Jesus Christ painting, and Francis Bacon's crucifixion piece was made at a young age, around 24 years old. Among some modern artists on the list, Bacon also spent significant time making religious paintings.
This painting became his first piece of art to draw real attention, and selling subsequent articles allowed him to fund the first solo exhibition, which gained a highly negative review from the Times. It resulted in Bacon destroying most of the works, a few of which were paintings with crucifixion sites.
Christ Pantocrator is the way through which Eastern orthodox iconography is painted. The icon style has remained the same and has been relatively flat for the last ten centuries.
The artist signifies his amiable character and shows humanity's powerful judgment. St Catherine's Monastery, Sinai, is among the oldest icons.
It has been available since the 6th Century AD and is seen as among the vital religious art pieces of Byzantium and Eastern Orthodox Christianity.
The Yellow Christ by Paul Gauguin
Renowned artist Paul Gauguin painted a colorful depiction of Jesus on the Cross. It's a piece that works together with his other painting Green Christ which he painted in the same year.
This painting came out when realism was abandoned, and there were more creative interpretations.
The Last Supper by Leonardo Da Vinci
It's perhaps the most renowned painting among all of Jesus Christ's paintings. In The Last Supper, Leonardo da Vinci also tried capturing Jesus Christ dining one last time with his apostles before Judas betrayed him and the Romans arrested him.
The painting was made as a fresco and had many hidden works, like Leonardo's other notable works.
The Last Judgment by Michelangelo
Michelangelo had an unrivaled influence on the development and evolution of art in the west. He is often referred to as the greatest sculptor. However, he was also considered one of the most important painters.
The Last Judgment is one of Western history's most well-known and respected works of fresco arts. It is on the altar wall at the Sistine Chapel, Vatican City. It depicts the Second coming of Christ (a future return of Jesus) and God's final eternal judgment for all humanity.
The painting shows Jesus in the middle, surrounded by prominent saints. In the lower zone is the descent of the damned to hell and the resurrection of the dead.
The Last Judgment is a well-known religious painting, but it has been controversial. Michelangelo was accused, among other things, of using figures from pagan mythology to depict a Christian subject matter. People also blamed him for choosing artistic effect over following the scriptural description.
Christ Carrying the Cross by Titian
Tiziano Vecellio, or Titian, was one of the most prominent names in Renaissance art. Born in 1488, he was the founder and first pupil of Giovani Bellini (considered to be the greatest painter of his time).
This scene shows Christ being accompanied by his executioner. We also see a noose around Christ's neck. This type of close-up scene was popular at the time, where one or two people fill the entire canvas.
Christ at the Cross by Rubens
Rubens painted Christ on the Cross, one of many crucifixion paintings. This painting technique draws from many classic styles, including the proper use of light and shadow.
Rubens' religious art was his forte, and he was the most well-known painter of the Catholic faith during his lifetime. He created Counter-Reformation altarpieces and was awarded several paintings commissions during his trip to Italy.
We hope that you enjoyed our list of famous Jesus paintings. These are just a few of the thousands of pieces created over the past 1,000 years, and they all have the utmost religious and artistic significance.