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World War II Triptychs:

Triptych 405

Christ as the Good Shepherd, c. 1945

Commissioned by: Citizens Committee for the Army and NavyMedium: oil on wood with gilded gessoExecuted by: Hildreth MeièreRelocated to: US Army Chaplain Corps Museum

Triptych 405, Christ as the Good Shepherd. Photograph in Citizens Committee for the Army, Navy, and Air Force records, 1940-1945. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC

Triptych 405, Christ as the Good Shepherd. Photograph in Citizens Committee for the Army, Navy, and Air Force records, 1940-1945. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC

Triptych 405, bears the inscription from John 10:14: I AM THE GOOD SHEPHERD AND KNOW MY SHEEP AND AM KNOWN OF MINE

A photograph of Triptych 405 recently taken shows its actual colors, in contrast to the faded colors of the negative in the collection of the Archives of American Art shown above:

Triptych 405. Photograph by Holly Mitchem, 2015

Triptych 405. Photograph by Holly Mitchem, 2015

A comparison of Triptych 405 with Triptych 116, an earlier version of Christ as the Good Shepherd, reveals Meière’s ability to vary similar subject matter. In Triptych 405, the top of the center and side panels are curved; in Triptych 116, the shape of the top is triangular. In Triptych 405, Meière created a shallow space by spreading the sheep across the three panels of the foreground delineated by palm trees on the side panels. In Triptych 116, she created distance by placing Christ and the sheep mainly in the center panel in front of a grassy hill that recedes into the distance.

Triptych 116, Christ as the Good Shepherd

Triptych 116, Christ as the Good Shepherd

The five-foot-high Triptych 405 was donated to Station Hospital at Carlisle Barracks, Carlisle, Pennsylvania, on April 2, 1947 by the Champion Paper and Fiber Co. It was transferred to the US Army Chaplain School in 1948, located at Carlisle Barracks from 1946-51. Today the triptych is in the collection of the US Army Chaplain Corps Museum in Fort Jackson, South Carolina.1

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Information on Triptych 405 was provided by Marsha McManus, Director, US Army Chaplain Corps Museum, Fort Jackson, South Carolina.

Commission Location

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US Army Chaplain Corps Museum
Fort Jackson
10100 Lee Road
Columbia, SC 29207

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