The Way of Sorrows at Jasna Góra Monastery
In the First Station of the Via Crucis, we see an image of Christ tied and crowned with thorns standing before Pilate. But Pilate does not really appear because the artist did not included him in the painting. The reason for this seems to be that the trial of Jesus, that happened once in history is continuously repeated over time. Those who are now condemning Lord Jesus are others. Such seems to be the vision of the great and popular Polish artist Jerzy Duda Gracz in the paintings he did on the Jasna Góra Monastery in Czestochowa, Poland.
In the painting a blind judge can be seen and also a basin for washing hands from the blood of the Lamb. One can also see a lot of microphones representing the media. Precisely some of the media is dedicated to spreading falsehood and deception about the Lord Jesus, Christianity, the Church and Church members. Media in our days is a very powerful tool for the invention of new myths and to try to ridicule Christ and to damage the reputation, character of good name of Christians and leaders of the Church. A great number of junk programs, “news” articles, and Internet posts. Many politicians also try and discredit the Catholic religion, pouring consistently lies to deceive the people. It is they who want to become gods and make laws about what is, in their opinion, good and bad, just and unjust. The promotion of abortion laws with the wanting excuse of “Giving more rights” to women, is just one dramatic example. The cover up to get rid of unborn children, is quite a terrible example of mass murder. Adding up to this macabre vision of a present and a future one can see the absurd arguments to make euthanasia laws as to banish the elderly people, or races. Nazi Euthanasia Program, is probably something the artist knew, as he was born and lived near concentration camps. It all looks like the first step for a society such as the ones envisioned by Aldous Huxley in Brave New World; by George Orwell in 1984, William F. Nolan and George Clayton Johnson in Logan’s run, and so many others who wrote about the consequences of the oblivion of the dignity of all human beings. The theoretical or practical elimination of God from both the public and the private sphere opens wide open the doors for any class of tyranny. In short, Jesus Christ is condemned continuously to death in multiple ways in modern society.
“What you do to one of these you do to me”
One can easily state that if you are not Polish nor have you been at Gasna Góra Monastery (Czestochowa), you probably have never heard of the famous post-II-war painter Jerzy Duda-Gracz (20 March 1941 in Czestochowa – 5 November 2004 in Lagów).
He was born in the midst of the Second-World-War of the 20th century. Undoubtedly, Jerzy did not see the invasion of his country by a joint operation of Nazi Germany and the Stalin´s Soviet Union. Two Nazi and Communist tyrannies joined their maneuvers in a military operation that marked the beginning of the Second World War. That horrendous war, was until today the deadliest conflict in human history. It resulted in 50 million to 70 million fatalities, including the mass murder of civilians, the Holocaust of Jews, Romans, Christians in the Concentration Camps.
The invasion began on 1 September 1939. So as a child he saw the persecution by Nazis of people known to his family. Afterwards he experienced the coercive strength of the Communist puppet regime. Then, after finishing elementary school in 1955, Jerzy studied at the National High Technology Visual Arts. At 21 he left home and traveled to Katowice, where he lived until his death.
There he continued his artistic training at the School of Graphic Arts in Krakow Branch of the of Fine Arts Academy . In 1968 he graduated and began working on his first series of paintings and portraits of Polish issues (1968-1979). The group included such famous images as Polish Triptych (1972) and field s Hamlet (1977).
He had clearly outlined the style and theme that returned in later cycles of painting topics Friday, Dances, Dialogues of Poland (1980-1983) and images of the aristocracy – Historical (1985-1991).
During his lifetime, his work was exhibited in over 187 national and international exhibitions. Now it can be seen at the Polish National Museum in Warsaw, the museum of the Jagellonian University in Kraków, in the Collegium Maius, the Museum of Earth at the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw, the Uffizi Gallery in Florence (Italy), the Pushkin Museum in Moscow (Russian Federation), the Municipal Museum in Ghent, the BAWAG Foundation in Vienna, the Vatican Collection (Vatican State) and in galleries and collections in many other countries such as the Louvre in France. Obiously it can also be seen in Gasna Gora´s .