We saw this painting in the Musee d’Orsay in Paris. What struck me at first was the immense size of this piece. Those figures are at least twice life size if memory serves me correctly. Secondly, the two very different expressions on their faces is what gives this painting its true genius. John, the younger man on the left, with hands clasped against the cold wind, seems exhausted but maintains a sheer hope in his eyes. The news he has heard was foretold, and he rushes bleary-eyed with his friend Peter to the tomb desperately wanting it to be true. Peter, the older man on the right, expresses wide-eyed disbelief at the possibility of a risen Lord. His right hand even presses against his heart as if to calm himself. Both men appear to be moving quickly, not quite at a run, but with a determined and focused push forward, leaning into the reason for their early morning dash.
I spend a lot of time at church during holy week and I grumble quite a bit about it, as seen in previous posts, but there is something about the glory of Easter that presses against the heart at this time of year. I think part of it is a newness in the world as spring returns to greenify nature; a renewing of life in many aspects.
I wish for all of you a joy in life that is matched by the renewing of faith in these two men as they rushed forward in the twilight of a new day. Whatever your faith, your beliefs, your doubts, today is a new day and brings with it new possibilities.
See you in the funny papers!