Essay, 3 pages (650 words)

The last supper painting

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The last supper painting which represents the last suppers’ scene during the final days of Jesus as it is narrated in the Gospel of John is a 15th century painting that was created by Leonardo da Vinci. For the refectories, its theme was a traditional one though Leonardo’s interpretation saw it as one having a greater depth and realism, Michael Baxandall. The painting The lunettes that are formed by a triple arched ceiling of the refectory have their painting done with Sforza coats-of-arms.

Common to other depictions of the last supper, the convention of having the dinner seating on one side of the table was also adopted by the Leonardo such that none of the disciples have their back on us. The previous paintings had excluded Judas from the other disciples and Jesus by having him on one side alone. Leonardo adopted a more realistic and dramatic effects by having Judas lean back and more into shadow, Michael Baxandall. Also a psychologically engaging and realistic means is adopted in Leonardo’s painting that is meant to explain why Judas whom Jesus had predicted will betray Him takes bread at the same time with Jesus.

In this painting Jesus has been portrayed saying this to James and Saint Thomas who reacts with the expected horror when Jesus points to a piece of bread right before them, Barcilon and Marinin. As if though he is distracted by the ongoing conversation between Peter and John, Judas goes for a different piece of bread and Jesus acting as if though He is unseen by Judas reaches out too with His right Hand towards it. In the painting there are several references to digit 3 that maybe interpreted to be an illustration of the Holy Trinity.

The apostles have their seating in groups of three, behind Jesus there are three windows and Jesus figure resembles that of a triangle. All the lighting and angels painting draw their attention to Christ. Other references were probably lost in the process of deterioration, Barcilon and Marinin. A common rumor that surrounds the painting is that the same model was used in the painting for both Judas and Jesus. Some writers have also tried to identify the person seated to the right of Jesus as Mary Magdalene and not as the apostle John.

This saw the coming up of the novel The Da Vinci Code. The critics of this theory point it that since Leonardo was requested to do the painting, an apostle ought to could have been missing in order to make way for Mary Magdalene. Beside the purported Mary Magdalene is wearing male clothing and it was a common tendency of that time to show young people with feminine figures as a way of portraying their inferior position. John, the youngest thus is shown to be like a feminine or boyish figure with long hair and asleep like a neophyte, Michael Baxandall, Painting.

The critics also point out that the painting’s cartoons that have been preserved show no female faces. Other feature pointed out on the painting is that there is a hand holding a dagger infront of Simon Peter and is associated to no one. Clearer reproduction of the painting show the dagger to be Peter’s right hand. If this was true of the presence of a dagger infront of Peter, it may probably indicate Peter’s nature as it was seen when he cut off a soldier’s ear. Conclusion The last supper painting as represented by Leonardo can be regarded as to be one that does represent the reality of the time.

This is so since there are thirteen people which is interpreted as the twelve apostles and Jesus. The presence of Mary Magdalene as some critics of the painting point out can most likely be rule out since the purported figure that could be Mary Magdalene can clearly be interpreted as John the youngest apostles as the paintings of that time portrayed young men with feminine qualities and like neophytes. Besides, the clothing of the figure are those of a male. All features in this painting carry on the last suppers’ message as depicted in various Gospels.

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