Friday, April 19, 2019

Requiem for a Sanctuary

Copyright © Edward Riojas

There are, of course, greater things on which to write for this Good Friday. The news, however, is sometimes hard to brush aside, and news with tragic, artistic overtones cannot be ignored by an artist.

The fire that destroyed much of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris jammed the news and social media this week. Fellow Christians were quick to remind us that, while beautiful and monumental, the church is not THE Church. THAT Church will never fall. In fact, so many fellow Lutherans posted words from the hymn, “Built on the Rock,” that writing on that theme would have been simply redundant.

The church building, we are told, will not fall, either. At least not entirely. As quickly as its steeple fell, talk of rebuilding put to rest any ideas of forever losing the famous facade. Pledges of money started pouring in from every unlikely part of the world, so we can rest assured that it will survive.

While undoubtedly a huge inspiration among the Roman brethren and the French, the Notre Dame Cathedral has also been an inspiration among artists, whether Christian or otherwise. Today’s post takes a look at a few images that not only give credence to artists’ reputations in capturing the landmark’s every mood, but also gives homage to the facade that gave inspiration in the first place.

“A View of the Seine River With The Notre Dame Cathedral in the Distance” Constantin Kluge

"L'Abside de Notre Dame de Paris" Charles Meryon. 1854.

"Notre Dame." Constantin Kluge. 1963.

"Notre Dame de Paris and the Flower Market." Marie-Francois Firmin Girard. 1900.

"Notre Dame de Paris vue du quai Saint Michel."  Maximilien Luce

"Notre Dame in the Snow." Emanuel Phillips Fox.

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