African, african american art, african american artist, African art, Art, Art History, Artists, Black Art Historians, Black Art History, Black Madonna, Black Women, Blog, Iconography, sculpture

“Madonna” by Elizabeth Catlett

From an early age I’ve always been fascinated by the Madonna and child imagery. “Madonna, in Christian art, depiction of the Virgin Mary; the term is usually restricted to those representations that are devotional rather than narrative and that show her in a nonhistorical context and emphasize later doctrinal or sentimental significance. The Madonna is accompanied most often by the infant Christ, [but she can be depicted alone.]” [1]

I remember my eldest cousin wore a ring with an engraving of Mary, Jesus’s Mother. When she babysat us I would stare into it, curiously, trying to figure out who this woman was. Our neighborhood grocery store sold candles in glass containers painted with her image. I would always find some excuse to have a glance at them, fascinated about the colors and line work.

When I reached college and finally found a major that held my interest, which was Art History, I researched the topic of the Madonna and Child imagery in a final college thesis pertaining to photographer, Renee Cox. Strangely, after college I was informed by my mother, (after she listened to my final thesis presentation), that a close family friend and artist, Shonna McDaniels, painted about Madonna themes while my brother and I  was with her. Perhaps, this is where my fascination on the topic began.

Anyways I say all this to let you know that my curiosity on this subject still fascinates me to this day and I use this blog as record of my research on this topic along with other art related topics that interest me. So that brings me to Madonna by Elizabeth Catlett.

Madonna.jpg
Elizabeth Catlett: “Madonna”, 1982. Lithograph.

While exploring art and artworks from the Harlem Renaissance,  I found this Madonna image by artist and educator, Elizabeth Catlett . As you can see there is a mother figure with two small children. The two children’s bodies are covered by their mother’s arm.  The smaller child looks out at the viewer. The eldest child looks up and off the canvas. The mother gazes down toward her children.

Sources:

[1]https://www.britannica.com/topic/Madonna-religious-art

The information on this web-page is for educational and research purposes.  Article entries and images are not my own. Please review sources and links above for more information. This blog post is for educational purposes only and for sharing valuable information to others interested in the arts.

Thank you.

 

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