St. Luke the Evangelist (2020)
Oil on Board
305mm x 305mm x 39mm
Many New Zealanders are proud and grateful for having eradicated COVID-19, thanks to the ‘go hard and go early’ strategy. The series of three works, Covid Saints, focuses on people who suddenly loomed large in our lives through the Covid-related communications we were glued to during lockdowns.
Many painters have portrayed prominent people of their time as saints as a way to point to qualities of value. In this painting, Director General of Health Ashley Bloomfield is shown as St. Luke the Evangelist – the patron saint of doctors. St. Luke is usually shown with a winged calf, here a dairy calf in a Taranaki pastoral scene with kea wings. Kea are often studied because of their remarkable ability to learn, reflecting the ‘learning on the fly’ way many things had to be approached during the pandemic. Stick with the plan were words Ashley Bloomfield used in a 1pm briefing that exemplify the kind of simple, mantra-like way of speaking that reached many people.
First shown in the Reflections: The Art of Lockdown exhibition at Percy Thomson Gallery in Whakaahurangi Stratford in January and February 2021.
Taranaki Covid-19 experiences put on display in art exhibition: NZ Herald website
There are numbered, limited edition (100) 48-page A6 notebooks available with this image at stockists: