Tag Archives: Jacobus de Voragine

The Birdfeeder

There is an apocryphal story in The Golden Legend of St. Remy, and how whenever he at the birds came down to share his meal because he was so gentle and blessed. I thought to depict this meal, being shared with the birds, too many birds, and Remy’s arms growing long enough for all the birds to perch on them as they were eating his bread.

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Paul the Hermit

Inspired by the apocryphal story of St. Paul the Hermit in The Golden Legend of Jacobus de Voragine. After his death, Paul was attended to and buried by two lions. The scene has a fairy tale, folk tale charm.

Fairy Tale for Paul by Julie Kwiatkowski Schuler.

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St. Thomas of Canterbury

I am always reading Jacobus de Voragine’s The Golden Legend, a compendium of Christian saints, their histories and apocrypha. This is a sketch that I’ve come up with for St. Thomas of Canterbury, also known as Thomas Becket. He suffered a pretty bad wounding to the head from King Henry’s men and is often depicted with a sword through his head. I’ve drawn from my love for anatomical illustration to show him with his brain exposed and holding a slice of his preserved brain. An abhorrence to nightingales is also ascribed to Becket, who is said to have been so disturbed in his devotions by the song of a nightingale that he commanded that none should sing in the town ever again. Here are some nailed to the wall of this study. As Thomas was chastising a priest for his excessive devotions and masses to the Virgin Mary, the Virgin appeared to the priest and told the priest that Thomas would find his hairshirt mended with red thread. Thomas had put the shirt under his bed to mend it later. Thomas found his hairshirt was indeed mended with red thread and he gave the priest dispensation to continue to honor the Virgin. Here you can see her through the window with her red thread.

I really enjoy cobbling together these scenes of the true and not so true. Hopping across the threshold of accuracy and apocrypha. When I finish one of these, more than my other works, I know that no one else could have made this particular composition with these particular images. I like to convey the impression that it was impossible to get to this image, and yet it exists, because I made it up.

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St. John the Evangelist



St. John the Evangelist
at My Good Babushka. A creative interpretation of St. John the Evangelist. St John is often depicted writing the book of revelations, and with an eagle. He is said to have dumped out a cup of poison which transformed into a snake and slithered away into the wide, wicked world. St. John is sometimes depicted wearing pink and is sometimes confused with Mary Magdalene. I’ve fused the story of St. John the Evangelist and the recent pieces I’ve been doing that have a Victorian/ early natural history museum toner. My St. John is a young scientist taking notes next to his taxidermy eagle. A snake skeleton is mounted on the wall behind him, and at his feet a serpent slithers out of a brandy snifter.

Original acrylic on paper painting, approximately 8″ x 10″, by Julie Kwiatkowski Schuler. The painting does contain the “My Good Babushka” watermark, or the black side bars, which were included here for security and formatting purposes.

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St. John the Evangelist

St. John the Evangelist. St John is often depicted writing, the book of revelations, presumably, and with an eagle. He is said to have dumped out a cup of poison which transformed into a snake and slithered away into the wide, wicked world. St. John is sometimes depicted wearing pink and is sometimes confused with Mary Magdalene. I’ve sort of got a mash-up going inspired by the story of St. John the Evangelist and the recent pieces I’ve been doing that have a Victorian/ early natural history museum sort of flavor. My St. John is a young scientist taking notes next to his taxidermy eagle. A snake skeleton is mounted on the wall behind him, and at his feet a serpent slithers out of a brandy snifter.

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Didymus

I have finished Didymus. Here is how the completed work looks:

This painting is inspired by my reading of The Golden Legend by Jacobus de Voragine. He wrote a compendium of the saints. This one in particular is for St. Thomas the Apostle. Thomas was called the twin of Jesus, also Didymus, which means twin. I have represented Thomas as conjoined twins. Conjoined twins reinforce the notion of a spiritual connectivity, as feeling and living in the same body must give a unique connectivity that transcends what most people will ever experience. This particular twin configuration was inspired by the Tocci twins, Giacomo and Giovanni. Giacomo and Giovanni Tocci were conjoined twins born in Italy in the late 19th century.

Saint Thomas was an architect. So I’ve represented that with the building tools and the birdhouse. The holy spirit is usually represented as a dove, so I thought a birdhouse would be a most appropriate construction. The other hand is covered in blood because Thomas was a doubter, and he could only be convinced of the resurrection by putting his hand in the wound of Christ. The closure on the front of the jacket is in the shape of a Y, echoing the Y incision that a doctor would use in an autopsy. It is a wound that signifies inquiry and investigation.

This is an original painting by Julie Kwiatkowski Schuler, acrylic on acid free paper 8″ x 10″
The “My Good Babushka” watermark is for security purposes and is not on the painting.
You can find purchasing information Here at My Good Babushka.

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Didymus

Sharpening up the details of the right side twin and figuring out how to get the floor on that side sorted out.

If you’re new to this painting:
This painting is inspired by my reading of The Golden Legend by Jacobus de Voragine. He wrote a compendium of the saints. This one in particular is for St. Thomas the Apostle. Thomas was called the twin of Jesus, also Didymus, which means twin. I have represented Thomas as conjoined twins. Conjoined twins reinforce the notion of a spiritual connectivity, as feeling and living in the same body must give a unique connectivity that transcends what most people will ever experience. This particular twin configuration was inspired by the Tocci twins, Giacomo and Giovanni. Giacomo and Giovanni Tocci were conjoined twins born in Italy in the late 19th century. Saint Thomas was an architect. So I’ve represented that with the building tools and the birdhouse. The holy spirit is usually represented as a dove, so I thought a birdhouse would be a most appropriate construction. The other hand is covered in blood because Thomas was a doubter, and he could only be convinced of the resurrection by putting his hand in the wound of Christ. The closure on the front of the jacket is in the shape of a Y, echoing the Y incision that a doctor would use in an autopsy. It is a wound that signifies inquiry and investigation.

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