Mystical Nativity painted by Sandro Botticelli
You are invited to work with this painting of the Nativity in light of your experience of the Logopraxis process. Below is a description of some details about the painting. There is far more to learn and theorize about this work of art, but this is an opportunity to let your knowledge of the Logopraxis process lead your interpretation, rather than the art critics. Any comments below are welcome, it is hoped we can build a conversation about the process around this piece of art.
This is a unique picture for the Renaissance, as it is not a usual rendition of the Nativity. It has typical components, drawn from the story in Matthew and Luke: Mary, Jesus, Joseph, ass, ox. Wisemen are on the left of the painting, shepherds on the right. Angels are very present.
The unusual is this: Botticelli also included elements of Revelation, or the Second Coming. It is said that the artist felt that he was living during the Second Coming. He says in the inscription at the top of the painting: “I Sandro painted this picture at the end of the year 1500 in the troubles in Italy in the half time after the time according to the 11th chapter of St. John in the second woe of the Apocalypse in the loosing of the devil for three and a half years. Then he will be chained in the 12th chapter and we shall see him trodden down as in this picture.” Look for the devils (7) in the very lowest part of the painting. Putting these two pieces of the Word together in a painting would have been highly unusual.
Another unusual aspect of this Nativity rendition is its very well developed story line above the actual scene of the holy family. It cannot be read with the naked eye, but the scrolls that the angels above the stable and just under the gold dome are holding have written on them the words “ Twelve Privileges of Mary”. These are all qualities of Mary that the church held important at that time. You can look those up if you want. Some research I did indicated that the 12 privileges were qualities of Mary that are seen as the 12 stars on the head of what we call the Woman Clothed with the Sun. My brief research cannot confirm this information.
These angels circling in the air hold olive branches, which are attached to crowns and wear white, green and red.
Look also at the 3 angels in the foreground. The scripture that is in the hands of these angels reads “peace on earth to men of goodwill” .
The link below will take you to a copy of the painting which you can enlarge and move around to see smaller pieces. It may assist you in scrutinizing detail and coming up with your read of this piece.
How can this painting of the Nativity and the Second Coming reflect our work?
I look forward to what is offered.