This artwork is a little gem. Stunning and painted in vibrant Winsor & Newton inks, it is a contemporary reflection on one of the foundations of the Christianity in the ancient, indigenous art of the British Isles, which can be traced back to the Celtic peoples the Roman invaders called Pictii. The illuminated lettering style used here is from the 7th century Lindisfarne Gospels whilst the knotwork border which decorates the surrounding mount is adapted from a Pictish cross slab at the Rossie Priory in Perthshire, Scotland.
'Love', the title of the piece, is one of the three cardinal virtues. 'God is love' the Bible tells us and so naturally this thread runs throughout the Bible. In 1 Corinthians 13, St Paul writes what must be one of the most beautiful of the ancient texts on love:
'If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love,
I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.
If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge,
and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.
If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.
But where there are prophecies, they will cease;
where there are tongues, they will be stilled;
where there is knowledge, it will pass away.
For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears.
When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child.
When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.
For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face.
Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.'
The artwork would make a beautiful and timeless gift for anyone appreciative of traditional Celtic art and Scripture.
'Love'. One-of-a-kind, hand-painted script with knotwork border.
'Faith' was created using:
Winsor & Newton inks
Daley Rowney Artists GRAPHIC B and F grades
Winton fine hog
Rowney nylon '0'
Pro Arte Series B Hog, Series 22 Hog varnish