judas kiss

JUDAS KISS | Oil on canvas | 64" W x 68" H

any people are uncomfortable with sex, an anxiety that's reflected in attitudes with gender differences and sexual inhibition. Some of this fear is projected and disowned as homophobia.

At the root of these attitudes resides an active belief that not all forms of love's expression are sacred. We must begin to think of sexuality as a divine state, a natural act. And when I say sexuality, I don't mean pederasty or bestiality. That's violence—not sex—sexuality is always consensual and loving. If you are having sex as a means of making love, of affirming life, how can there be reason for shame? To quote an Atlanta minister, “God is not a neurotic old school marm. We need to get God off the bedpost and back into bed.”

Why does Judas Kiss depict Jesus in a homosexual embrace if I do not literally mean Jesus was gay? In Western Civilization, Jesus is THE ideal of holiness, of perfection in the flesh. My purpose is to de-shame our human sexual natures, especially gay sexuality, and present it as a sacred act, a spiritually correct behavior. Thus, Jesus is the perfect symbol to help us heal our shame and reclaim the holiness of our sexual natures.

I also chose Judas as a symbolic reminder that we betray ourselves and others when we reject or disown what is intrinsically our nature.

Secondly, I want to show the folly of taking a representation about spiritual beliefs literally. Perhaps people can see the mistake of taking the Scriptures literally, too.

© Copyright 1993, 2015 Becki Jayne Harrelson