Take Away the Cross by Dirk Vanden
A gay artist’s inspired paintings of a naked Jesus are the newest additions to the Jesus in Love library of glbt spiritual art.
The two images were painted by Dirk Vanden, who is also the author of three early gay novels.
Take Away the Cross shows Jesus dancing beneath a glorious sunburst in the midst of a cross. The crowd around Jesus includes portraits of Vanden’s friends, references to Michelangelo, and some of the artist’s favorite rock stars. Look for Buffy St. Marie, Janis Joplin, Paul McCartney, David Crosby, George Harrison, Gracie Slick, Neil Young, Neil Diamond, Paul Simon, John Lennon and Yoko Ono.
Ecce Homo (Jumping Jesus) leaps for joy, with wings that carry him into the sky. [Correction from the artist added Nov. 6, 2008: "That is his long hair, spread out behind him as he flies, not wings - & not up to heaven! If he's back, he's here to stay. Actually, in my head as I painted him, he's jumping with joy to be free of the cross."]
Vanden painted these pictures in 1971, but they are still fresh. Now the artist is busy putting his latest gay Jesus ideas online. Click here to read his reflections on “Is Jesus Gay?”
Ecce Homo (Jumping Jesus) by Dirk Vanden
Kittredge Cherry blogs at the Jesus in Love Blog and edits the Jesus in Love Newsletter on queer spirituality and the arts. She offers GLBT and progressive spiritual resources at JesusInLove.org.