Patricia Buard, my good friend of over thirty years, a founding member of my prayer group the "Order of St. Michael," passed away yesterday. She was a mainstay of my life, and I could always count on her for hospitality and administration help in our Order. She was also a master costumer and had a background in theater and theology. A few years ago she asked me to paint her portrait as a medieval donor, kneeling before the Holy Beings of our Catholic faith. It was an elaborate commission based on a late medieval royal diptych icon. I worked a long time on it but was finally able to present it to her in mid-2015. I am so glad that she was able to see a longtime dream of hers, to become an artwork among the painted angels. Behind her stands Saint Michael, the warrior angel, as well as Saint Anne with the young Mary.
Here is the complete diptych. The figures are the Sword of Saint Michael, the Virgin Mary with the Christ Child, and three of the Four Archangels, Gabriel, Uriel, and Raphael. In back of Patricia is a window through which you can see the skyline of Philadelphia, near where she lived. She requested the city view as part of the whole concept. Her craftsman husband, Michael, built a gilded folding frame for the art. This is one way we can hope to keep Patricia's memory alive here among us.
Acrylic on hardboard, 20" x 15", summer 2015. Click on image for a larger view. This has been posted before here but I think it's appropriate anyway.