chapter  3
25 Pages

Distinctive Individual Visions

Art has always been subject to fashion. During the twentieth-century the influence of the media changes of artistic fashion has been trumpeted as never before; furthermore, the changes have had an international dimension. So it is that since World War II two of the most talked about styles, abstract expressionism and Pop art, Originated in the USA. The painting of the crucifixion in Liverpool Cathedral, Calvary 1998, is different from the majority of Aitchison's studies of the subject in a number of respects. Normally he shows Christ alone, an utterly isolated figure; here he is set between the two bandits as in the crucifixion story. The Dean of St Paul's at the time, Alan Webster, wanted to buy a crucifixion for the cathedral but this was vetoed by other members of the chapter. The Dean wrote of the crucifixion, which is now in the Tate, 'Here, the divine is vulnerable and disturbing, not almighty or ecclesiastical.