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Four Beasts at the Throne of Heaven

Photo by Peter Paul Geoffrion

Four Beasts at the Throne of Heaven

Artist: Annie Lucas (Born in Autauga County, Alabama, 1954)
Culture: American
Date: 1993
Medium: Acrylic, thread, and glitter on canvas
Dimensions:
Frame: 35 x 31 x 1 inches (88.9 x 78.7 x 2.5 cm)
Classification: Painting
Credit Line: Gift of Bruce Lineker, A.B.’86
Label Text:The Alabama-based artist Annie Lucas learned the art of sewing from her mother, a skilled seamstress who, as Lucas recalls, could make "new dresses out of flour sacks." Lucas translated her mother's legacy of great needlework into her own art by sewing figures directly onto canvas, thus combining the traditions of painting and appliqué. As the work's title suggests, Lucas's animals are the incarnation of the beasts that guard the throne of heaven in the Bible’s New Testament. According to the Book of Revelation, each of these creatures—a lion, a calf, an eagle and one with a face like a man—has six wings "full of eyes around and within." Lucas imbues all of her majestic animals with a human-like quality, but she stays true to the text by painting the beast at the bottom left more human than the rest. This creature is well groomed with shoulder-length hair parted down the middle, in contrast to the wild mane of the lion above.
Object number: 2018.20.2