Susie Hamilton - Ecce Homo

Susie Hamilton (b.1950)

Acrylic on canvas

15 x 21 cm

1999

Methodist Modern Art Collection
HAMI/2010

Image Copyright © Trustees for Methodist Church Purposes. The Methodist Church Registered Charity no. 1132208

John 19:4-7 

‘Ecce Homo’ is Latin for ‘Here is the man’ (or ‘Behold the man’ in some versions of the Bible). It has been an important subject in Christian art from the 9th century and, more recently, has been extended beyond representation of Jesus to the portrayal of suffering and the degradation of humans through violence and war. This is a study for several much larger works. A lone figure stands with arms outstretched and the torso forms a vertical axis in the centre. The openness of the posture demonstrates vulnerability and acceptance, yet also the possibility of transcendence. The white figure on the black ground is composed of many thin layers of watery acrylic paint which have been poured, floated, and blown with a hairdryer to create a semi-transparent effect. This indicates both the material body and the immaterial spirit or soul.

Commentary based on A Guide to the Methodist Art Collection.