In God’s Hands: The Witness of Pontius Pilate

“…because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that we should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth; Who, when reviled, reviled not again; when suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously..” I Peter 2: 21-23 KJV

God Thru the Arts

Where Do You Stand?Ecce Homo, Antonio Ciseri, 1891, Oil on Canvas,292 X 300 cm, Galleria dell’ Arte Moderna, Florence Italy, Image Courtesy WGA.

This painting, by Antonia Ciseri, called “Ecce Homo”, or “Behold the Man” is one of many examples of this scene. Usually an “Ecce Homo” painting will be some sort of representation of Jesus as he is presented to the crowd by Pontius Pilate.  He is usually represented wearing the crown of thorns and a red robe; the focus of these paintings being the suffering and humiliation of Jesus. But notice what Ciseri does here that is different:

  • He places us on the reverse side of the scene. We  can not really see the crowd, but we know  they are there.
  • He effectively puts us in the background as a witness to the event.
  • Notice all the little details of light and shadow and how this artist uses his expertise of transparent white to create a realistic setting.
  • Look at all the…

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