Christian Vandalism — Design for Relief

Charles Sargeant Jagger (1885-1934)

c.1911-14

Pencil

Source: McAllister 90

This is one of Jagger's early unexecuted designs, which I. G. McAllister tells us "was suggested by seeing some of the priceless works of art in Venice which had been destroyed by ruthless and bigoted iconoclasts." It shows a monk at the bottom next to a broken column, wielding a great mallet, and suggests religious art suffering similar outrage to that suffered by Christ himself at the crucifixion. McAllister finds "great skill in the composition and treatment of this subject," and says that Jagger "draws in an understanding way, and his wonderful knowledge of form enables him to express his meaning very clearly," adding that the skill and his own feeling are both subordinate to the theme itself: "his technical skill is simply a means of expression, and he makes it subordinate to greater things" (96). In all these respects, it can be said to foreshadow Jagger's powerful war memorials.

Image scan, text and formatting by Jacqueline Banerjee.

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