Station to Station: Colin McCahon's Veronica Paintings, 1949-1979
The stations of the cross were a recurrent motif in Colin McCahon’s art. This article focuses on the one station that he singled out for particular emphasis: Station 6, Veronica wipes the face of Jesus. The paper argues that for McCahon the stations were a kind of matrix, grid or armature, a structure within which he could explore various religious and aesthetic ideas. The appeal of Veronica derives from the possibilities inherent in the image of Christ’s face on her veil or handkerchief as a symbol both of religious truth and aesthetic exploration; in McCahon’s work she becomes a kind of patron saint of painters.
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