LDS Church leaders admire the work of 19th-century Danish artist, Carl Heinrich Bloch. His depictions of Christ are ubiquitous throughout Mormon culture.
Personally, I’m not a fan of Bloch’s work; in the artist’s depictions, Christ looks like a Scandanavian. And for some reason, I picture him as being more Mediterranean. Hell, maybe He was even black, God forbid. Another concern is his hair. One blogger refers to it as the “Panteen Pro-V” Jesus. I seriously doubt that Christ, the rebel that He was, spent much time on his hair.
The latest flap doesn’t concern Bloch’s original work, it is the censorship of his depiction of angels. In the December 2011 Ensign, someone has deleted the wings on Bloch’s female angels and added cap sleeves on their shoulders.
According to Heather in dovesandserpents:
I feel like someone has hijacked my religious train car and steered it right off the rails. We’re so concerned with modesty that we have now taken to modifying a beautiful piece of artwork before publishing it in our official church magazine so that it reflects our hyper-vigilance with regard to modesty?
On top of that, she wondered why the censor hadn’t covered up Christ’s nipple? The off-the-shoulder garment doesn’t seem very proper either.
The sort of tinkering with art that is exemplified by the Ensign is silly, extremely naive, and counterproductive. But it does give me something to complain about.