Sunday, April 12, 2009

Noli Me Tangere

This is Noli me tangere, which means "Touch me not," painted by Titian in 1511-12. It depicts Mary Magdalen at the moment when she recognizes the risen Christ. The painting hangs in the National Gallery in London and I was priviledged to see it in person a few years ago.

This painting has a wonderful history. During World War II, the museum moved the entire collection to various places in the country to protect it from the Blitz. But the war-weary Londoners pleaded with the authorities to leave them something to remind them that there was hope. They asked for Noli me tangere to remain. People would stand in line for hours in the empty museum for the chance to file past this one single painting. In a time when people didn't know if the next bombing raid would hit their homes, they needed reassurance that there was life beyond this one.

Wishing you a Happy Easter, Happy Passover, and Happy Spring.


Alaine said...

What a beautiful painting! Thanks for sharing it. Happy Easter!

EmilyBryan said...

The same to you and yours, Alaine!

LuAnn said...

I love the expression on Mary's face.

Genella deGrey said...

Wow. Thank you for sharing that painting. SO beautiful.

EmilyBryan said...

LuAnn, the astonishment on her features is awesome. And in the actual painting, you can see that her sleeves and hair are flying because she's just thrown herself at His feet. I love when artists capture such a sense of movement and Titian is a master at this.

Genella, thanks for letting me share it. I spent such an unforgettable day in the London museum. My DH was working, so I could dawdle in front of whatever piece I wanted and just drink it in for as long as I liked. Being able to share some of the pieces that are special to me is like introducing an old friend to my new ones.

Nynke said...

What a beautiful wartime story to go with the painting, too!