Lot's Wife

58”x50” oil on canvas 1996

The painting of Lot’s Wife shows her turned from us, facing the hail of fire that is destroying the city of Sodom. The commentaries say that she turns to see if her daughters have followed her from the burning city. In this poignant maternal gesture, she sees instead the “Shechina” - “the Spirit of God”, and instantly dies, becoming a pillar of salt.

In the background, Lot is seen disappearing into a cave with the two remaining daughters. These two women become convinced that all life on Earth is being destroyed, and in an attempt to save it, they make their father drunk, have sex with him, and later, give birth to two children who will go on to be the progenitors of great biblical figures, one of which will be King David.

The lunette shows a young girl who took pity on a hungry traveler to Sodom, giving him bread and water. The inhabitants of Sodom, known for their cruelty and their refusal to allow strangers into the land, punished her by smearing her with honey, whereupon the bees consumed her. The ancient sages claimed that despite all the evil deeds of the Sodomites, it was the cries of this maiden that convinced God to destroy the city.

View Full Resolution Image