Monday, 21 March 2016

Station 6: Veronica wipes the face of Jesus

Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Show us the Father?
 John 14:9

Hans Memling - Saint Veronica

According to Church tradition, Veronica was moved with pity when she saw Jesus carrying his cross to Golgotha and gave him her veil that he might wipe his forehead. Jesus accepted the offering, held it to his face, and then handed it back to her—the image of his face miraculously impressed upon it. This piece of cloth became known as the Veil of Veronica.
Hans Memling ( 1465 - 1494) painted this famous painting circa 1470-1475. He painted oil on wood and it's part of the collection of the National Gallery of Art in Washington, USA.

El Greco -
St. Veronica with the Holy Shroud

The cloth was ever after known as the vera icon (true image) and, while significant for all artists, it may have been even more important to El Greco who trained as an icon painter. Regardless, in keeping with the tradition revealed here, El Greco depicts himself as a woman holding his/her "painting" of her/himself as a male Christ. Christ is the symbol of our true non-gendered humanity and, in looking inwards as esoteric Christians did, he saw himself as Christ. That is the meaning of every painter paints himself, an imaginative depiction of our divine essence because, in the Inner Tradition, God is inside us and everywhere else too.

Albrecht Durer -
The Sudarium of St Veronica

In 1510 Albrecht Durer cut from wood, this masterpiece, the Sudarium (in ancient Rome a cloth, usually of linen, for wiping the face)  of Saint Veronica. You would have to go to the British Museum in London to see it.


  1. Lots of different interpretations of the same incident aren't there. ;) Thanks Han.

    Hugs and blessings...Cat

  2. As much as I enjoy seeing the art work...I love the explanations you give behind the portraits...thank you..
    hugs abby

    1. The painting begins to live within the context it was painted. If you know more about what is on the painting you appreciate it more.

      At least I do, that is why it was so much fun doing this Station series.

      Thank you for your comment,


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