​John Everett Millais - Christ in the House of His Parentsoil on canvas, 1849/50, 86,4 x 139,7 cm, Tate Museum in London

Ewww. That hurt!


Picture description and interpretation of the famous painting "Christ in the House of His Parents" by John Everett Millais!

John Everett Millais - Christ in the House of His Parents

A small boy has injured the palm of his hand and presents it frontally to the observer. His mother kneels beside him and looks at the wound. In the background two men work on a wooden door, chips fall. Behind the table in the middle, where the men work, stands an older woman who watches the scene in front with concern. Shyly another boy brings a water bowl into the picture.

Jesus in his parents' house" - Millais called his painting, so the scene takes place in the joinery of Joseph. He bends over to the boy from the right. He is already depicted as an elderly man by his half- bald head - a common stylization, which is to reinforce the theory of the immaculate conception. The left boy, however, who brings the water so clumsily, can easily be identified as John the Baptist.

Millais creates a less idealized fantasy scene from Jesus' childhood, which in many ways refers to his life and passion. Through the carpentry workshop, however, we find a new context that Millais cleverly and harmoniously combines. A drop of blood from Jesus' hand falls on his foot and replaces the stigmata; the ladder in the background and the two nails so present on the wooden plate also refer to the "arma christi". The triangle above Christ's head can be interpreted as a symbol of the Trinity. The dove that has taken a seat on a rung of the ladder is also in this context.

The fictional scene shows Jesus in a white robe with reddish hair. While the people in the background continue to do their work, his mother, who has fallen to her knees, has already taken a lamentation gesture and thus points to the coming fate.

© the artinspector / alexandra tuschka