What is Lucifer crying about? In theory, the answer is simple. Is it possible to cry simply for the sake of crying, regardless of whatever provocation brought the emotion forth? Obviously, this seems possible, and certainly, it can be argued that this is the emotional motivation behind the fallen angel’s weeping. The problem, though, is that this interpretation fails to capture the power of the image. We would like to believe that Lucifer’s crying painting is weeping simply for the sake of it, a rash cry, born of unbearable frustration at the punishment by God. But is it possible that the scene depicted in The Fallen Angel is not a desperate expression of grief, but instead, a display of vengeance?
It is often said that art’s purpose is to provoke, and in this instance, the depiction of the fallen angel’s emotional outburst certainly provokes. His tearful, howling, and ultimately futile cry should provoke our emotions: anger, pity, sorrow, disgust. After all, Lucifer is, in essence, crying in agony, hurt, and not just for himself but for all of humanity as well. His anguish is not only about his own personal loss, but for the society that he has abandoned, the disciples that he had attempted to lead, the souls that he had failed to save. Lucifer painting his tears speaks to us as one who has felt a similar sense of hopelessness; if he is crying because of his loss, how much worse must the result of his failure be? Moreover, the tears themselves also possess some form of potency, a moment of such unapologetic vulnerability that it provokes sympathy for his despair.
What are the Particular Aspects of Lucifer Crying Painting?
The artistical Lucifer crying painting appears to be using the quality of tears as a visual delivery system, an archetypal visual rhetoric that claims to capture the soul of an emotional event. Let’s consider one particular aspect of the painting’s composition: the droplets of tears that appear on Lucifer’s cheeks and trickling down from his face. From this vantage point it is clear that Lucifer is, at least in part, crying in shame. While we often focus on the intricate design of the oil painting, there is another aspect of the composition that we should be considering: the arrangement of the droplets in Lucifer painting. The design in which they appear is arranged in a tight cascade, creating the illusion that the droplets are falling directly down the angel’s face. When we look closely at the painting, we can see that his tears are falling down both his cheeks and from the creases in his eyes.
What Lucifer is Weeping About?
What purpose does Lucifer’s sobbing serve? Why is it even necessary to hear it? The reason is, of course, because he is weeping for you, and for all of humanity. Despite the fact that the text does not actually tell us what Lucifer painting is showing tears about, we can read a number of different stories in which Lucifer is either rejected or abandoned. First, we have the story of God’s command that Satan be cast out of Heaven. Here, Lucifer is cast out for disobedience, and as such his cries are deeply felt. In another place we see the same tear-soaked face of Lucifer and are told that he cried because he was alone and abandoned:
“And the angels hid in the mountains, so that he would not see their faces, for he had become very angry when he was alone. And he raised his voice against them to roar out loud.”
What’s Going on in Lucifer’s Tears?
Why is the artist putting droplets of his own tears onto the painting? Surely it is not to deceive the viewer into thinking that Lucifer was genuinely crying. After all, that would be akin to creating a painting of a human in the act of crying, and then having the subject look right at the Lucifer crying painting and say “I am not crying.” It would also be a lie because Lucifer, and every human, cries. The tears that are in the image are, however, unique. Some evidence indicates that these are tears of molten iron. Again, it is difficult to come to a firm conclusion, as so little evidence is available, but, according to Seubert:
“The tear in his left eye is too bright for it to be molten iron, but some small part of it is, as is the right eye of Lucifer’s face, the right cheek, and the left cheek of the man crying. In fact, this part is so bright that we can clearly see that his tears are not drops of liquid, but pure light.”
In order to be able to see the tears in Lucifer’s painting, we have to look at them through some kind of an obscuring device, like a bifocal viewer. When the viewer is in place, the light that is leaking through is very dim. It is very much like looking at a photograph on a dark night, and not being able to see the sun except with the help of some kind of artificial light. The result is an image that is somewhat enigmatic. On its face, Lucifer is sitting or standing in front of a city, looking at us with tears streaming down his face. Why does he look sad? In order to make that observation, the viewer must come to an understanding that the tears on the face are of a bright blue hue, which, when light shines on it, tends to leave a red color behind. The tears on Lucifer’s face, therefore, must be tears of the same blue that is falling on the ground.
Wrapping – Up!
Lucifer crying painting is one of the most moving paintings in the painting gallery. The artist himself called it “Astonishing.” There are, of course, two stories behind this work. One is that Lucifer is crying, the other that he is crying because he is alone. In our opinion, the best indication that the Lucifer painting is a work of art, rather than a painting of an emotion, is the fact that the artist chose to use a painting of Lucifer’s tear on his masterpiece. We all know that tears are an appropriate response to sorrow, loss, or loneliness, but this is a painting depicting a place in the story, so there are no tears.
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