Nativity, by Bruce Herman

Nativity, by Bruce Herman

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BRUCE HERMAN 
Nativity (after Giorgione's Adoration of the Shepherds) 
Lithograph 13" x 20"
 
The original piece from the National Gallery that I chose to interact with - Giorgione's Adoration of the Shepherds - had a strong emotional appeal to me. The darkness of the cave in which the holy family kneels, the craggy cliff above, the lovingly wrought forms of the shepherds and incidental landscape - all of this worked on me to motivate the response I've made in the lithograph. My version of the Holy Family is somewhat different: Mary is older and partially unclad like a nursemaid, the infant Jesus is separated from his parents by a visual boundary, and his flesh is pocked and scarred like someone having been scourged. I've conflated the birth narrative in the gospel with Good Friday and the grief of the blessed Virgin. In some sense this is as much a pieta as it is a nativity. 

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