Jason Sorley

Jason Sorley is a dear friend and an excellent artist.  He is based out of Waco Texas and works in the genre of Classical Religious Art.  Jason’s muse is a total babe: Check him out and enjoy.

Jason Sorley Gallery: Art Guild

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2 Responses
  1. Joshua Neu says:

    Have I mentioned that I love this? Very well done. What intrigues me is some of the differences to the famous Caravaggio of St. Jerome. In Sorley's, the saint is, well, ripped. He's got what some would call old man strength, whereas the figure in the Caravaggio is frail, almost emaciated. Furthermore, the Caravaggio is more horizontal with the arm outstretched, whereas the painting has more verticality with Jerome standing and leaning over his books. One gets the thought that Sorley's Jerome is a workman, much like a carpenter leaning over his table, in addition to his eremitic discipline.

    Question the first: Who art thou?
    Question the second: What is the dealiwop in his left hand? I can't get a good look at it on my pc.

  2. Jason Sorley says:

    I'm glad you enjoy the painting. Caravaggio painted several (3) Jeromes, "St. Jerome Writing"-St. John's Co-Cathedral, Valletta, another portraying the same subject-Borghese Gallery, Rome, and yet another singularly pensive "St. Jerome," Museo de Montserrat, Barcelona. The most obvious parallel between the Jerome of Caravaggio and my own is the color combination red and black, raising the figure to an almost exalted level, a figure of light in the darkness. In the Valletta painting, we find Jerome at the inception of his work, he's writing in the beginning of his notebook. The saint's gaze appears not to be directed at the work but rather on an outcropping of objects, a stone, a skull, and a cross resting between he and the viewer. The most forward is the precariously placed crucifix on the table. It serves as both a compositional/theological device, our eye is immediately brought up into the writing, the work, through Christ's Cross, and a source of visual anxiety, true Christian thinking might fall just as easily as the crucifix. Between Christ and the saintly work is humility (the stone) and mortality (the skull) and the viewer is being drawn up out of the darkness by the Cross. Nearly running off the canvas is an unlit candle on a stand. Obviously, Caravaggio is saying the light which illumines the scene in not fabricated but is created, an interior light given by God.
    I have chosen a different approach in my description of Jerome. Some of the symbols remain the same, some have changed, and the skull and crucifix are omitted entirely. Christ is present in the word which Jerome has gathered up in a heaping mound. We can imagine him dog-earing the pages and digging through the tomes and folios. The candle is lit but no one would think that so much light could come from that little flame. The fabricated light is overpowered by the created light, which here is exterior. The light illumines the scene from outside, and is therefore less absorbed into saint’s attributes and more revelatory of them. For, it is said, "the Spirit seeks not so much to be revealed as to reveal." (Hans urs von Balthasar) There is another allusion to Caravaggio, the "Narcissus." Whereas Narcissus peers into the reflection of his visage and is lost there, Jerome peers into the word of god, finds his true identity in relation to it and is animated by it (in some ways like Sartre’s treatment of vanitas). He seems to levitate, quite nearly. The only thing anchoring his floating frame is the word (Christ) and the stone (humility) in his left hand. The painting is unfinished. As one can see the stack of books, papers, scrolls have not been fully developed.

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