Sunday, September 26, 2010

Re: Blasphemy

Nag (Jan-Erik Romøren) of Tsjuder
8.75" x 9"
oil on wood, 2010

The upside down cross is the most recognized emblem used by black metal musicians. The meaning of it is simply an inversion of the Latin cross, it signifies Satan in stead of Jesus. A simple Wikipedia search learns that the historical meaning, a symbol of St. Peter signifying humility, is quite different but that's not to the point.  The point is that when Nag would raise his arm to make the sign of the devil with his hand he would inadvertently invert the inverted cross again, making it read as the Latin cross once more. Kidding aside I do truly get into this music. When I play it loud enough it gets an escapist function for me, similar as what alcohol does. The thing is that every time I write about the music it seems like I need to joke about it as to undermine the seriousness of it and to play down my own involvement. In my third year as a black metal fan I have to come to terms with it and accept that I like an unpopular -inferior in the eyes of the connoisseur- style. The song Blasphemy by the Norwegian black metal band Tsjuder is listed for the third straight year. I'd announced in April (see Blasphemy entry)  that I would use the very same iconic picture I used in 2008 and 2009 but I went a different route with this painting of Nag sporting the inverted cross. The finished painting features about ten more of those inverted crosses coming down from the sky as in an famous image of a Christian revelation in which it rains crosses.

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