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Painting: Acrylic, Oil on Canvas.
THE KINGDOM OF JERUSALEM. 2018. 59,1 (h) x 47,2 (w) x 0,8 in. 150 (h) x 120 (w) x 2 cm. acrylic and oil on canvas
* * * * This painting is inspired by the history of the medieval Crusades. These Crusades were a series of religious wars between Christians and Muslims started primarily to secure control of holy sites in the Eastern Mediterranean considered sacred by both groups. Eight major Crusade expeditions occurred between 1096 and 1291.
The (Latin) Kingdom of Jerusalem was a crusader state established in the Southern Levant by Godfrey of Bouillon in 1099 after the First Crusade. The kingdom lasted nearly two hundred years (1099 until 1291). After the successful siege of Jerusalem in 1099, Godfrey of Bouillon, leader of the First Crusade, became the first ruler of the Kingdom of Jerusalem. The kingdom was ethnically, religiously, and linguistically diverse, although the crusaders themselves and their descendants were an elite Catholic minority. They imported many customs and institutions from their homelands in Western Europe, and there were close familial and political connections with the West throughout the kingdom's existence. And the kingdom also inherited "oriental" qualities, influenced by the pre-existing customs and populations. But on July 4, 1187, the army of the Kingdom of Jerusalem was utterly destroyed at the Battle of Hattin and over the next few months Saladin easily overran the entire kingdom. After the fall of Jerusalem 1187 the capital of the kingdom was moved to Acre and controlled most of the coastline of present-day Israel and southern and central Lebanon, including the strongholds and towns of Jaffa, Arsuf, Caesarea, Tyre, Sidon, and Beirut. But in 1291 the last remaining possession, Acre, was destroyed by the Mamluks and the Kingdom of Jerusalem didn’t exist any longer. This was the end of the Era of Crusades. However, for the next seven centuries, up to today, a veritable multitude of European monarchs have used the title of King of Jerusalem.
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“For we who were Occidentals now have been made Orientals. He who was a Roman or Frank has in this land been made into a Galilaean, or an inhabitant of Palestine. He who was of Rheims or Chartres has now become a citizen of Tyre or Antioch. We have already forgotten the places of our birth; already these are unknown to many of us or not mentioned any more.”
~ Fulcher of Chartres (The Latins in the East, Chronicle, 1128) * * * *
This fight between the Orient and Occident, between (Roman Catholic) Christianity and Islam has a long history. What I know: those that fail to learn from history, are doomed to repeat it (Winston Churchill). Only the deeper knowledge of the past enables a peaceful tomorrow. This fact includes the attempt of understanding individual medieval environment, motivation and set of beliefs. Beyond all question historical narratives of the Era of Crusades offer us stories of humility, courage, creed, and hope and inspired romance, philosophy, and literature by accounts of heroism, chivalry, and piety. Emotions mixed with their unshakeable belief in God that motivated kings, knights, servants and ordinary people to “Take the Cross”.
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This painting is also part of the triptych THE FAITHFUL AND THE FALLEN (also available here at Saatchi Art) and offers an aesthetic and colourful impression on your wall AND as my authentic and personal artwork an artistic subsurface message. For further information and more photos please visit the page of the triptych at Saatchi Art.
I use exclusively oil and acrylic colours, canvas and wooden frames in a professional museum quality. The paintings wears my signature on the front and is signed, entitled and dated on the backside. Deliberately the sides are not part of the painting and show the black-painted canvas (beautiful contrast). The painting is ready to hang (on the backside: high-quality iron plates with metal inserts and nylon rope for gallery use), unframed and doesn’t need a frame or any additional surface treatment. The piece will be safely shipped in a custom wooden crate. It will be accompanied by a certificate of authenticity and a cover letter.
Please note: In context pictures are not necessarily to scale and are for illustrative purposes only. If you have any questions about this artwork or any other piece, feel free to contact me and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.
Thanks so much for taking an interest in my work.
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