Colin McCahon

The Way of the Cross

The Way of the Cross by Colin McCahon

Artwork Detail

The Way of the Cross is Colin McCahon's most significant commissioned work of art on a religious theme. It was intended as a devotional panorama for display in the choir balcony at the private convent chapel of The Congregation of Our Lady of the Missions in Upland Road, Remuera, Auckland. McCahon has concurred with Catholic theology that requires a cross made of wood be used to mark each station. As well as this, McCahon has inserted a painted shadow, or a silhouette, of each cross immediately under the Maltese wooden crosses. The painting is a visual story illustrative of the hours from the moment that Jesus is sentenced to death until his corpse is placed in its cave sepulchre. The story of Jesus' last day is seen against a landscape that directly references the volcanoes of the Auckland isthmus, while also recalling the hills on which Jerusalem was established.

The Way of the Cross
Production date
synthetic polymer paint on three hardboard panels
406 x 6103 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, on loan from the Thanksgiving Foundation, 2003
Accession no
Other ID
L1999/41 Old Accession Number
Copying restrictions apply
New Zealand Art
Display status
Not on display

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