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"The Love Letters of Mary Magdalene": Mary Magdalene was a Jewish woman who, according to the four canonical gospels, travelled with Jesus as one of his followers and was a witness to his crucifixion, burial, and resurrection. She was the closest disciple of Jesus and is believed to be the only one who truly understood his teachings.

The painting portrays Mary Magdalene as a violet, silhouettic figure in the bottom center section of the canvas. The lines show a sensual woman with voluptuous curves, sitting on her knees with arms wide open, turned towards the sky. Her head is also turned towards the sky, looking upwards. The position of her arms is showing that she is ready to receive the Holy Spirit, but also to offer a warm, compassionate embrace.

Mary Magdalene has a reputation in Western Christianity as being a repentant prostitute or loose woman; however, these claims are not supported by the canonical gospels, which at no point imply that she had ever been a prostitute or in any way notable for a sinful way of life. The colour of her silhouette is violet - an ideal choice to depict this confusion, as violet is the colour of humility in the symbolism of the Catholic Church, but it has exactly the opposite meaning in general society. As a colour that rarely exists in nature, and a colour which by its nature attracts attention, it is seen as a colour of individualism and extravagance. The golden detail in her chest symbolizes her pure, radiant soul, and the red curve is the symbol of her passionate life energy, love and devotion.

The golden shine above her head represents the divinity of Christ. The violet squares scattered above Mary burst from the realms of the spiritual being of Jesus, representing his divine-human nature, as he is both fully divine and fully human, yet one person. They are violet, just like Mary’s body, to refer to this connection of his with the mortals. The white net-like edges around the violet squares remind us of the belief that Mary came from the town of Magdala, a fishing town on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee.

A widespread but inaccurate belief is that Mary Magdalene was a repentant prostitute or promiscuous woman; yet, very little is known about her life. Unlike Paul the Apostle, Mary Magdalene has left behind no writings of her own, nor were any works later forged under her name, as was common for the other disciples. Knowing this, the artist was able to take advantage of the artistic freedom: the red handwritten letter-like shapes emerging through different layers of the painting positioned around Mary hide the mysterious words of the letters she wrote to her loved one. These letters were not addressed to Jesus, in spite of the conspiracy claims of her being Jesus's wife or sexual partner, but they were rather written as the outcome of her secret, silent longing for bodily pleasures with her masculine partner which she left behind as she joined Jesus and travelled with him as one of his followers. She never sent those letters, but kept them to herself. The writing in the bottom right corner of the painting is the imagined signature of Mary Magdalene. She used to place that signature at the end of every love letter she ever wrote (as imagined and visualized by the artist).

The painting and the selected colours celebrate love, both spiritual and physical one and invites the viewer to slide from the edges of historical facts into the soothing atmosphere of the imaginary romance. It also speaks about emotions and human connection..

Mixed media: acrylic, dry pastels, oil pastels, texture paste, metallic golden flakes.

This is an original painting, painted by me on a stretched canvas, signed on the back. It is not possible for me to re-create it. It is vibrantly coloured and rich in texture. The painting is covered by a protective topcoat to keep off dust and other dirt or marks that could build up over time and discolor the painting.

Please, keep in mind, that due to the color settings of your monitor / pc / smartphone, the colours of the painting may be displayed slightly differently than the physical painting.

Item Name:

The Love Letters of Mary Magdalene

Kostić Tijana
Item ID: 400206
Edition: Original
Dimensions: 50cm x 70cm (19.7'' x 27.6'')
Media: Mixed Media, Canvas
Theme: Others theme
Year made: 2020
Framed: Framed

Not specified

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Artist Kostić Tijana

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