Richard Bavin - The Empty Tomb

Richard Bavin

Watercolour on paper

55 x 71 cm

2013

Methodist Modern Art Collection 
No. BAV/2015

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

Luke 24 1-3

The painting places the viewer at eye level within the tomb, moments after Jesus has walked out into the garden in the warm light of the early morning. The grave-clothes lie in a discarded heap. In preparation for painting this work, Bavin read through the Gospel accounts of Holy Week several times as a prayerful meditation and found himself dwelling on the stillness and emptiness within the tomb moments after Jesus’ departure. ‘The absence was paramount: could I paint this space in a way that conveyed something of the magnitude of what had just taken place?’ The watercolours have been built up in many layers, working in the traditional way of starting with light colours and progressing to darker ones. 

Commentary based on A Guide to the Methodist Art Collection.