elsen - painting of the Crucifixion while prayers were said...

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ARTH 1300 Elsen: Images of Gods In this article the section dedicated to the interpretation of death of Christ intrigued me the most. The idea of placing the interpretation of the Crucifixion by Matthias Grunewald, which occupies one of the main panels of the Isenheim Altarpiece, in a monastery church of the hospital order of St. Anthony, was a brilliant idea. The hospital treated patients with skin diseases such as leprosy and syphilitic lesions, diseases that were believed to be fatal. The article states that, “it was thought that skin disease was the outward manifestation of sin and a corrupted soul,” (page 30). By taking the patients before the painting of Christ and allowing them to say prayers for their healing, they were given the opportunity to identify with Christ. “ New patients were taken before the
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Unformatted text preview: painting of the Crucifixion while prayers were said at the alter for their healing. They were confronted with this larger than life painting of the dead Christ, whose soulless body was host to such horrible afflictions of the flesh, (page 30). This occasion had the possibility to bestow hope and solace into these patients, who before believed there was no cure for their dreadful illnesses. The idea that a piece of art can have significance this vast on a person, gives new meaning to my outlook on art. Before reading this article, it did not occur to me that a piece of art could have such impact on someone; art can give hope and restore feelings of assurance, promise, and possibility....
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