The Messianic Era: Israel and the Law, ca. 1903-1909
John Singer Sargent RA (1856 - 1925)
RA Collection: Art
This is a study for one of a series of murals depicting Judaeo-Christian religious imagery, which Sargent painted for Boston Public Library between 1895 and 1916.
Surrounded by guardian angels, the hooded figure of Jehovah shows a Hebrew scroll of the Law to Israel (personified as a boy) who counts its decrees on his fingers. Inscribed around the upper edge of the painting are the words spoken in Jewish ritual before the commandments are recited. The balanced composition and reserved painterly style reflect Sargent's French academic training.
The finished mural 'Israel and the Law' is the central image on the east wall of the library's third floor hall. To its left and right are the lunettes 'The Fall of Gog and Magog' and 'The Coming of the Mess1anic Era'. Opposite them, on the west wall, are images relating to Christian notions of redemption - "The Judgment", "The Passing of Souls into Heaven" and "Hell".
842 mm x 1680 mm x 18 mm
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