M+FG's 'Last Supper' is Just Too Haute for the Vatican
We felt pleasantly provoked by this ad for Marithe + Francois Girbaud, in which female models take up the mantles of Jesus and the Apostles for The Last Supper. There's also a man that we're guessing is supposed to be a Magdalene, or maybe a Judas, figure.
We love how the viewer is first slapped with recollection of the Da Vinci original, but beyond that the image merits a good long look. The facial expressions are wildly illustrative. And there don't appear to be chairs or table legs.
The image drew heat in Italy for disrespecting religious sensibilities and replacing sacred symbols with merch. We'd argue that appropriating a religious painting (which, come on, wasn't an accurate depiction anyway), then lacing it with a contemporary message, is a great way to put both the aesthetic and philosophical qualities of religion back on the discussion board.
Religious doctrine and art are ripe with symbols and rich stories, begging to be revived and reinterpreted. If advertising, as opposed to fresco, has to be our period eye, so be it.
What makes it less valid? Even the great painters were trying to get paid, and their sponsors - typically the monarchy or clergy - weren't exactly proponents of the bohemian vision.