Posts Tagged ‘Bouguereau’

La chanson des anges/The Song of the Angels
by William Bouguereau (1825-1905)
Oil on canvas, 1881
84 x 60 inches (213.4 x 152.4 cm)
Private Collection

In May, we honor our Blessed Mother of our Lord.

Thanks to Sacred Heart Media Productions, here’s a canonical tribute to Mary:

Hat tip to Faith and Family


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Flagellation de Notre Seigneur Jesus Christ/The Scourging of our Lord Jesus Christ
by William Bouguereau (1825-1905)
Oil on canvas, 1880
212 x 309 cm (6′ 11.46″ x 10′ 1.65″)
Cathedral of La Rochelle (La Rochelle, France)

Click for a larger image

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Le Saintes Femmes au Tombeau/The Holy Women at the Tomb
by William Bouguereau (1825-1905)
Oil on canvas, 1890
Private collection

Bouguereau: Le Saintes Femmes au Tombeau
[Mark 16:1-7] When the sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary, the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go and anoint him. Very early when the sun had risen, on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb. They were saying to one another, “Who will roll back the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?” When they looked up, they saw that the stone had been rolled back; it was very large.

On entering the tomb they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a white robe, and they were utterly amazed. He said to them, “Do not be amazed! You seek Jesus of Nazareth, the crucified. He has been raised; he is not here. Behold the place where they laid him. But go and tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him, as he told you.'”

About the Painting:

This picture, showing the three faithful women at the tomb of their crucified Master, Bouguereau finished in 1890, and exhibited that year at the Salon des Champs-Elysees.

Never,” says M. Maurice Albert, “was the artist more serious, more desperately impeccable. Who, then, would give himself the useless pain of trying to find, I do not say a fault, but a hint of hesitation in the drawing, the composition, the modeling of the “Holy Women at the Tomb “? What surety of hand and what serenity of soul! What a simply severe arrangement of figures, and what majestic impassibility! And yet,” he goes on to say, “that high and mighty door of masonic architecture would scarcely represent the opening to the little vault of Joseph of Arimathea, that funeral chamber which imagination aided by the archaeological discoveries and the descriptions of M. Renan shows as low and dark, cut under a projecting: rock. Nor, in the three women artistically grouped, who are such well-trained models, and whose discreet tears do not disfigure their calm and gracious modern faces, can one recognize the Galilean women, Mary Magdalene, Salome, and Mary Cleophas.”

Masters of Art, October 1906, Volume 7

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Virgin of the Lilies by William Beaugeraux

Except from La Vierge au Lys [The Virgin of the Lilies]
by William Bouguereau (1899)


Encyclical – Pope John Paul II
March 25, 1987

* 2. The Church’s journey and the unity of all Christians

33. This year there occurs the twelfth centenary of the Second Ecumenical Council of Nice (787). Putting an end to the well-known controversy about the cult of sacred images, this Council defined that, according to the teaching of the holy Fathers and the universal tradition of the Church, there could be exposed for the veneration of the faithful, together with the Cross, also images of the Mother of God, of the angels and of the saints, in churches and houses and at the roadside. This custom has been maintained in the whole of the East and also in the West. Images of the Virgin have a place of honor in churches and houses. In them Mary is represented in a number of ways: Icon of the Theotokosas the throne of God carrying the Lord and giving him to humanity (“Theotokos“); [shown at right] as the way that leads to Christ and manifests him (“Hodegetria”); as a praying figure in an attitude of intercession and as a sign of the divine presence on the journey of the faithful until the day of the Lord (Deesis); as the protectress who stretches out her mantle over the peoples (Pokrov), or as the merciful Virgin of tenderness (Eleousa). She is usually represented with her Son, the child Jesus, in her arms: it is the relationship with the Son which glorifies the Mother. Sometimes she embraces him with tenderness (Glykophilousa); at other times she is a hieratic figure, apparently rapt in contemplation of him who is the Lord of history (cf. Rev. 5:9-14).

It is also appropriate to mention the icon of Our Lady of Vladimir, [shown at right] which continually accompanied the pilgrimage of faith of the peoples of ancient Rus’. The first Millennium of the conversion of those noble lands to Christianity is approaching: lands of humble folk, of thinkers and of saints. The Icons are still venerated in the Ukraine, in Byelorussia and in Russia under various titles. They are images which witness to the faith and spirit of prayer of that people, who sense the presence and protection of the Mother of God. In these Icons the Virgin shines as the image of divine beauty, the abode of Eternal Wisdom, the figure of the one who prays, the prototype of contemplation, the image of glory: she who even in her earthly life possessed the spiritual knowledge inaccessible to human reasoning and who attained through faith the most sublime knowledge. I also recall the Icon of the Virgin of the Cenacle, praying with the Apostles as they awaited the Holy Spirit: could she not become the sign of hope for all those who, in fraternal dialogue, wish to deepen their obedience of faith?

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