Saturday 25 December 2010


Peace, Love & Joy

There is a legend that when the infant Jesus was lying in the manger of the Bethlehem stable, all the animals of the world made their way there to pay homage to the new-born babe. While the ox, ass and sheep bowed in adoration within the stable, the wild creatures were required to remain outside and had to content themselves with hoping for a glimpse of the Holy Child.

It is a legend referenced in P L Travers' fable The Fox at the Manger and in creating the picture above, my friend, the artist and illustrator, Pauline Baynes, chose to give the lion, the camel, the elephant and the others a very special closeness to the Christ and his mother as is fitting for the representatives of Creation gathering to worship the Creator in human form.

According to Wayne G Hammond of The Chapin Library, Pauline made this drawing in 1972 as a Christmas card design for the Cathedral in Washington DC, who, sadly, rejected it as 'too allegorical'.

The original artwork is currently for sale at £2,250 from The Illustration Cupboard.


Good Dog said...

I hope you and David have a very happy Christmas and manage to get your flight to Venice. Very best wishes for the New Year.

Brian Sibley said...

And a GREAT Christmas to you and She Who Must Be Worshiped!! Hoping very much that we'll actually manage that get-together in 2011!

Steven Hartley said...

I'm afraid I'm not in Santa's Good List - I'm in his EXTREMELY Good List.

Brian Sibley said...

Well, I'm very relieved to hear it! I trust you'll hold that position well into the New Year!

Sheila said...

Have a lovely Christmas and a good flight to Venice (keep looking out of the plane window - maybe you'll see Santa on his way home with an empty sleigh).