“The Ecstasy of the Artists; mate, better not touch it!” is a modern take on Caravaggio’s “The Incredulity of Saint Thomas” painting. The Jesus figure has been replaced with an art model, symbolising the divine relationship between the artists and their models. The other three figures clustered intimately together around the model are artists being mesmerised by the metamorphosis of a butterfly just had happened, resembling the formation of a new painting. The formation of art is represented by a butterfly as all butterflies go through complete metamorphosis through their lifecycle as all paintings do.
The inspiration comes to them as a woman made of flesh rather than as a disembodied idea.
Nick Stratopoulos, portrayed in place of St Thomas, seems to be fascinated by the beauty of the butterfly to the point he cannot stop himself but prods it with his index finger. Different to the original painting, the hands of the apostle in the middle, portrayed by artist Donald Keys, are not concealed. While Donald’s curiosity is undisguised, he is a bit more reserved not to disturb the transformation process and tries to stop Nick touching the butterfly. Lastly, the apostle on the right, portrayed by the artist of the painting himself, is equally intrigued yet kept back given his younger age, respecting the experienced artists in front of him.
Oil on linen
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This artwork is ready to hang.