Sunday, April 29, 2007

Back By Popular Demand +

William Holman Hunt (1853–4)

All right,
not by popular demand. I just needed to see it plainly and forthrightly again.
The Light of the World is an allegorical painting by William Holman Hunt representing the figure of Jesus preparing to knock on an overgrown and long-unopened door, symbolic of the human conscience. The scriptural basis for this concept can be found in Revelation 3:19-21: "Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me". According to Hunt: "I painted the picture with what I thought, unworthy though I was, to be by Divine command, and not simply as a good subject." It has sometimes been remarked that the door in the painting has no handle, and can therefore only be opened from the inside.
The painting was Hunt's most famous and successful work and was toured around the world. The original is now in a side room off the large chapel at Keble College, Oxford. Hunt painted a large copy towards the end of his life, which is now in St Paul's Cathedral, London.

No comments: