Mary Jo Leddy used this painting as a powerful summary of her keynote presentation at the 2016 CARFLEO conference. It is even more poignant today. Hugo Simberg depicts the scene in an actual place in the outskirts of Helsinki, Finland. The angel is both dispirited and suffering from eye damage. The painter was suffering from tubercular meningitis which damaged his lungs and caused him to have eyesight difficulties. In her hand, the angel is carrying snowdrops which are symbols of healing and rebirth. These are powerful symbols for us in a time of Coronovirus at Easter. The art begs us to go deeper:
- What do you see?
- What do you feel?
- What scriptural passage or passages does this scene reflect? Why?
- One boy is looking at us. What do you think he is thinking?
- Who are these boys in our world?
- Who is the angel?
- How is God found in this exploration?
Some details can be found at the Wikipedia site.
See also The Other World of Hugo Simberg