Although it would be impossible for me to select a favourite work in the exhibition there was one I very much liked which also made me squirm a little, titled “Christ Knocking”. It illustrates the passage from Revelation 3 which states, “Behold I stand at the door and knock….” Christ is standing on the right at the door, knocking, “majestic and insistent” as the text of the catalogue says. Yet, he has a slight smile on His face. There’s hope for me! Roland shows another figure on the left side of the work inside the building, who looks like I sometimes feel. He is peering through the peep-hole in the door, afraid to open it. The catalogue continues, “What if I open the door wide? What will my inner voice of conscience ask me to do that perhaps I am not yet ready to do?” Then I notice in the upper right corner of the painting a golden throne made for two and I recall the end of the chapter which states, “To him who overcomes, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne…” (Rev. 3:21).
On behalf of Glencairn Museum, and the Academy of the New Church, our parent organization, I want to end by thanking all those in England who helped create this exhibition and its very fine catalogue. First of all are the ministers in the Apocalypse Study Group: Mary Duckworth, Christopher Hasler, Michael Stanley, Clifford Curry, Bruce Jarvis, David Gaffney, and David Lomax. Several more were of considerable help getting the paintings to America and back, not an easy undertaking. These were, Melanie Bennett, David Friend, David Haseler and David Lomax.
Several more were of considerable help getting the paintings to America and back, not an easy undertaking. These were, Melanie Bennett, David Friend, David Haseler and David Lomax. Finally, I want to thank Roland, the artist who put weeks if not months of inspired creativity, and concentrated, painstaking, highly skilled work into each of the twenty-five paintings over ten years. He said this was possibly his most challenging commission; to this I would add that it may well be his finest body of work.
Director Glencairn Museum Academy of the New Church
Bryn Athyn, PA August 2012 www.glencairnmuseum.org
This exhibition report first appeared in the October 2012 issue of Lifeline, a publication of the General Conference of the New Church. www.new-church-lifeline.org.uk