Seeking solitude for prayer following the miracle of the loaves and fishes, Jesus retreats to the peak of a mountain. Tissot’s commentary observes that such solitary moments precede many significant episodes in Jesus’ ministry, including the Ordaining of the Apostles, the Sermon of the Beatitudes, and the Transfiguration, noting Jesus’ preference for “lofty spots,” elevations near to God, for these meditative respites.
In this dramatic image, Tissot sets Jesus against a night sky, his brilliant white robes backlit by the glow of the stars and the crescent moon.
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James Tissot (French, 1836-1902). Jesus Goes Up Alone onto a Mountain to Pray (Jésus monte seul sur une montagne pour prier), 1886-1894. Opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper, Image: 11 3/8 x 6 1/4 in. (28.9 x 15.9 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Purchased by public subscription, 00.159.137
Purchased by public subscription
Image: 11 3/8 x 6 1/4 in. (28.9 x 15.9 cm); Sheet: 11 3/8 x 6 1/4 in. (28.9 x 15.9 cm); Frame: 20 x 15 x 1 1/2 in. (50.8 x 38.1 x 3.8 cm)