Friday, 5 March 2010

Lent 3: Grace

From Isaiah 55:1-9 and Luke 13:1-9

This weeks readings pick up the theme of blessing and curse, life and death, repentance or destruction. The image of the fig tree is a powerful one. The owner wants to dig it up because it hasn't produced fruit, but the farm worker wants to give it one more chance...

I have been struck over the past two weeks by the way I have unconsciously used the same colour to represent contradictory ideas. For example, in week one, I used red to represent love, while in week two, red was used to indicate a threat. This got me thinking about the fine line between ideas or the way contradictions can be held closely together.

In this picture I have attempted to use the same colours on right and left, but on the left they are about death, while on the right the same colours indicate life. Red can be a threatening fire or sign of fruitfulness. Blue can be clear skies or storm clouds; living water or dead soil. Brown can be good soil or desert.

Here are the half images mirrored so you can see the effect of only one colour system:


I like to think that this painting says something about the way circumstances can change very rapidly. Despair can be transformed into hope in the flip of an image. I am reminded of the fall of the Berlin Wall or the end of Apartheid. Isaiah says, Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely pardon.' (Isaiah 55:6-7)

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