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XIII Days of Suicide


Pontius Pilate (Latin: Pontius Pilatus)


He was the governor of the Roman Judaea Province from 26 until 36. In modern times he is best known as the man who, according to the canonical Christian Gospels, presided over the trial of Jesus and ordered his crucifixion, instigating the Passion. Pilate's biographical details before and after his appointment to Judaea are unknown, but have been supplied by tradition, which include the detail that his wife's name was Procula (she is canonised as a saint in the Eastern Orthodox Church) and competing legends of his birthplace.
In all New Testament accounts, Pilate hesitates to condemn Jesus until the crowd insists. Some have suggested that this may have been an effort by Early Christian polemicists to curry favor with Rome by placing the blame for Jesus' execution on the Jews. Yet Pilate's ability to be swayed by the crowd and his subsequent unjust decision to execute the innocent man hardly seem complimentary of Rome. So perhaps to save face, he "washed his hands", and let the crowd decide.
Roman magistrates had wide discretion in executing their tasks, and some readers question whether Pilate would have been so captive to the demands of the crowd (Miller, 49–50). (And see, Nettervile, "Jesus, etc pp. 22-23) Summarily executing someone to calm the situation would, however, have been a tool a Roman governor could have used, and Pilate's reputation for cruelty and violence in secular accounts of the era makes it quite plausible he would have had no hesitation in using this tool.
With the Edict of Milan in AD 313, the state-sponsored persecution of Christians came to an end, and Christianity became officially tolerated as one of the religions of the Roman Empire. Afterward, in AD 325 the First Ecumenical Council at Nicaea promulgated a creed which was amended at the subsequent First Council of Constantinople in 381. The Nicene Creed incorporated for the first time the clause was crucified under Pontius Pilate (which had already been long established in the Old Roman Symbol, an ancient form of the Apostles' Creed dating as far back as the 2nd century AD) in a creed that was intended to be authoritative for all Christians in the Roman Empire. The main reason for this clause was to state the belief in Jesus as a real person, living in a precise moment and place, that is a historical Jesus. It is less clear that it was intended to implicate Pilate in Jesus' death. In modern times Western traditions regard Pilate as guilty, but those of Eastern Orthodoxy argue that he was clearly exonerated, and did all that he could to release Jesus.


Little enough is known about Pilate, but mythology has filled the gap. A body of fiction built up around the dramatic figure of Pontius Pilate, about whom the Christian faithful hungered to learn more than the canonical gospels revealed. Eusebius (Historia Ecclesiae ii: 7) quotes some early apocryphal accounts that he does not name, which already relate that Pilate fell under misfortunes in the reign of Caligula (AD 37–41), was exiled to Gaul and eventually committed suicide there in Vienne.
Other details come from less respectable sources. His body, says the Mors Pilati ("Death of Pilate"), was thrown first into the Tiber, but the waters were so disturbed by evil spirits that the body was taken to Vienne and sunk in the Rhône: a monument at Vienne, called Pilate's tomb, is still to be seen. As the waters of the Rhone likewise rejected Pilate's corpse, it was again removed and sunk in the lake at Lausanne. The sequence was a simple way to harmonise conflicting local traditions.
The corpse's final disposition was in a deep and lonely mountain tarn, which, according to later tradition, was on a mountain, still called Pilatus (actually pileatus or "cloud capped"), overlooking Lucerne. Every Good Friday, the body is said to reemerge from the waters and wash its hands.
There are many other legends about Pilate in the folklore of Germany, particularly about his birth, according to which Pilate was born in the Franconian city of Forchheim or the small village of Hausen only 5 km away from it. His death was (unusually) dramatised in a medieval mystery play cycle from Cornwall, the Cornish Ordinalia.
Pilate's role in the events leading to the crucifixion lent themselves to melodrama, even tragedy, and Pilate often has a role in medieval mystery plays.
In the Eastern Orthodox Church, Claudia Procula is commemorated as a saint, but not Pilate, because in the Gospel accounts Claudia urged Pilate to have nothing to do with Jesus. In some Eastern Orthodox traditions, Pilate committed suicide out of remorse for having sentenced Jesus to death.
Researched on Wikipedia.org


Skinned body – Expresses great amount of pain and suffering, mental physical and emotional that is unbearable.

A Platter of Flesh – partly seen, the platter of flesh is served in a golden platter, with their own skin being served, this symbolizes that they are the only ones to blame for their own death.

Whip – the handle of a whip is seen, this symbolizes the tyranny and pain this ruler caused.

Bowl of Blood – Pontius Pilate is known for his “washing of hands” from deciding Jesus’ sentence. This would symbolize that, he did not want the blame for punishing an innocent man, who is only guilty and was only sentenced by the people. but having to change the water to blood, it suggests that, Pilate has paid and was blamed greatly for it, that the water that should cleanse him or give him innocence is now a nothing more than a sign of guilt and blood shed.

Pilate looking upward – having to regret what he has done, he seeks forgiveness to the heavens.

Red cape – a symbolism of bloodshed and power

Someone else’s elbow – symbolizes of someone overpowering him like the crowd and Caiphas.

The tongue of an Asp – this is a tongue of a snake called the Asp, this symbolizes that his mind was poisoned when he made his decision crucifying Christ.

Pillow – Pilate was disturbed of what he did to Christ that in his dreams he is able to see him, and blaming himself for what happened. And ultimately, his conscience overpowered him until he succumbs to take his own life for he could not bear what he did. The pillow ultimately symbolizes his subconscious or conscience.

+Artist’s Notes+

I used Hristo Naumov Shopov as reference for Pontius Pilate’s face and body armor. He is known as Pontius Pilate in Mel Gibson’s epic movie, The Passion of the Christ. I also paused and used the design of the whip in the same movie that was used to scourge Jesus Christ.


+XIII Suicides Daily Update+

April 6, 2007 – Suicide I – Adolf Hitler [link]
April 7, 2007 – Suicide II – Benigno Aquino Jr. [link]
April 8, 2007 – Suicide III - Claudius Nero [link]
April 9, 2007 – Suicide IV - Cleopatra [link]
April 10, 2007 – Suicide V - Pontius Pilate [link]
April 11, 2007 – Suicide VI - Sigmund Freud [link]
April 12, 2007 – Suicide VII - Judas Iscariot [link]
April 13, 2007 – Suicide VIII - Vincent Van Gogh [link]
April 14, 2007 – Suicide IX - Salvador Dali [link]
April 15, 2007 – Suicide X - Jackson Pollock [link]
April 16, 2007 – Suicide XI - Kurt Cobain [link]
April 17, 2007 – Suicide XII - Sen no Rikyu [link]
April 18, 2007 – Suicide XIII - YOU [link]

The XIII SuicideS all in all - [link]


The Aftermath Thesis Exhibition Opening Photos of the XIII SuicideS – [link]

The XIII Suicides Canvas Making Documentary - [link]

Exhibited at the Beato Angelico Gallery UST Espana Manila + February 28 – March 10, 2007


For errors in the information given above, please note them to me so that I can change them. Thank you very much for staying with us in the XIII Days ofSuicide.

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