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RESTORATION: changing an art historical precedent

The title of this painting is called RESTORATION. It is a visual prayer for humanity to co-labor together with God and each other in harmony. Adam is breathing life into the God-given dreams of Eve and it is circling back to him as a blessing. When I painted it, I was thinking more about the beautiful mystery of marriage, than I was our historical issues with race. But that being said, the entire series of paintings I did about Adam and Eve was not only about our spiritual issues with God, ourselves, sin, the devil and each other, it was also about changing an art historical precedent. (Scroll to find out more below)

Since 2004, God has been impressing upon me how He sees the diverse color palette of humanity as beautiful. When I started my painting series about Adam and Eve, I didn't just choose Dexter Carpenter as my model for Adam because of his physique or because I'd known him since I was 19, although those reasons did play a role. But I also chose Dexter because of how in Christian art history there is a serious lack of people of color. And in my mind, this goes against the word of God. When John the Beloved encountered Jesus on the island of Patmos, he saw a great number of people before God's throne "from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages." (Revelation 7:9) This speaks volumes to me about how in the Kingdom of God there is both unity and diversity. So I set out to make a painting series about the brokenness and redemption of humanity that would also celebrate the beautiful contrast between dark and light skin. God is the most amazing artist, and He has made each of us unique and special; each of us in the shades and hues of our skin and personalities is here because He knit us together in our mother's wombs. (Psalm 139)

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