In this fabulous work Japanese Kiri-e artist Gen Tsuboi responds to Lamentations 3:55-56.
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55 I called upon thy name, O Lord, out of the low dungeon.
56 Thou hast heard my voice: hide not thine ear at my breathing, at my cry.
We often lose hope because of various trials. On such occasions, it feels like we are thrown into a place surrounded by utter black walls that give us an illusion of hopelessness. But if we know that God helps us without fail, our despair turns into eternal hope. Since we have learned the idea of the value of God’s kingdom, we become liberated from the idea of the values of the human world, and come to believe that God does not ignore us no matter how hard we suffer from painful situations. People who obey God are never left alone.
The passage in Lamentations arouses in my imagination a scene of a person who looks straight up to God from a deep pit. He stands on his toes and raises his hands towards Him, confessing his need for His help and for His love. The persons in the small, dark places on either side of the central figure of the man in the pit represent the man in times past – both good and bad – when he did not relate to God. The swirling parts represent the flow of time.
"I have created kiri-e based on themes mostly drawn from the New Testament as my life’s work after my retirement ten years ago. I want my work to convey the gospel to the world. I’ve exhibited my works three times in Canada and twice in Japan. Some of my works are in churches in both Japan and Canada. In the future, I hope to produce Christmas cards, New Year’s cards, and calendars."
- Gen Tsuboi, 2015