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Illuminated text study of Page for Christ, My Refuge, One ... Image 1

Illuminated text study of Page [9] [poem verses 3 and 4] for Christ, My Refuge, One of Seven Hymns by Mary Baker Eddy, illustrated by Violet Oakley [Boston: The trustees under the will of Mary Baker Eddy, 1939]

c. 1939
Watercolor and black ink on paper with guidelines in graphite
Credit Line
Gift of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 2015
15 x 11 in.

Description & Inscriptions

After a series of tragic deaths in her family, Oakley abandoned all hope in medicine. Although she still attended Episcopal services with her mother, like thousands of women at the turn of the century, she was attracted to Christian Science, a new religion founded by Mary Baker Eddy. Eddy professed belief in a “father-mother” Creator, valued the “divine mind” over medical intervention, and proclaimed that death was impossible for a creature with an immortal soul._x000D_
In 1903, Oakley officially joined the Church of Christ, Scientist. She was instrumental in building the first two Christian Science churches in Philadelphia: the First Church of Christ, Scientist at 40th and Walnut Streets (now the Rotunda) and the Second Church of Christ, Scientist, at 5443 Greene Street (now part of Germantown Friends School). _x000D_
Designed as an illuminated manuscript, Christ My Refuge demonstrated the artist’s mastery of calligraphy and her ability to create visually compelling contemporary images with a medieval art form._x000D_


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