OUR LADY of PERPETUAL HELP DRAWING by DANIEL MITSUI
This is one of several drawings I have made depicting Christian religious subjects in the style of traditional Japanese art. It depicts the Blessed Virgin Mary and the Infant Jesus and contains the traditional elements of an icon of Our Lady of Perpetual Help: the infant Christ, frightened by a vision of the archangels Michael and Gabriel holding the instruments of the Passion, climbs into his consoling mother’s arms, as one of his shoes falls from his foot.
I referenced several 19th century Japanese prints for this drawing, but one in particular was an especially strong influence: Chujo-hime and the Spirit of Her Wicked Stepmother by Yoshitoshi. I wanted to be sure not to use as the model for the Blessed Virgin any woman with inappropriate associations, so I searched for prints of women famous for their virtue and chastity.
Chujo-hime was a nobly-born girl who was mistreated by her stepmother The stepmother was roused to jealousy by the girl’s continuous prayers for her dead mother’s soul. Chujo-hime later became a Buddhist nun, and gained renown for her skill at embroidery. When I saw this print, I noticed many symbols that would, in a Western context, be associated with the Blessed Virgin: the underfoot snake, the vase of white flowers, the prayer beads. It seemed to me to be an especially fitting model for my own drawing of Our Lady of Perpetual Help. From Yoshitosi’s print, I also got the idea to make the haloes in the form of lotus leaves.
Medium: Drawing, color ink on translucent washi
Dimensions: 14 1/4" × 21 1/2"
Open-edition giclée prints of this drawing are available. You may use the buttons below to pay via PayPal, debit card, or credit card. Be sure to confirm the shipping address.
Actual size art print: $287
28" × 43" large print: $574
200dpi digital download: $57
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