Madonna and child – day 17

madonna w child cropped
‘Madonna and child’  mixed media, Isabella El-Hasan 2018

Fascinated by the image of Mary holding baby Jesus I made this watercolor painting to celebrate motherhood and feminine qualities such a compassion and being the nurturer and sustainer of life.

I first heard about Mary via the Catholic church when I was a young girl. I had a medallion with her on it, for protection, given to me by my great-aunt. Later I learned about the story of Mariam (Mary) mother of  the prophet Issa (Jesus) via Islam. There is a whole chapter (surah 19 Maryam) dedicated to her in the Quran. She is described as upright, intelligent, loving, kind and pious. Angel Gabriel comes to her to tell her she is pregnant with a son. Never having been married she has to hide her pregnancy and eventually she gives birth all by herself in the desert. When she returns to her village, the people are shocked and quick to judge. But then the newborn baby starts to speak and declares she is a virgin and he is the prophet Issa.

From 2008 until 2011 I was attending classes at Buddhist Centre Jamyang in London and learned about meditation and the Buddhist understanding of the nature of our mind. The figure (goddess) that comes close to Maria is Tara, a Bhodisattva in female form. (Bhodisattva: a person who has generated Bodhicitta, a spontaneous wish and compassionate mind to attain Buddhahood for the benefit of all sentient beings.)











All these elements and experiences I have with different expressions of spirituality come to fruition in this painting.

Also, my personal journey of becoming a mother and being grounded in such a real way by it are a constant influence in my art.

madonna w child close upmadonna w child CLOSE detail 1

If you would like to enjoy this work on your wall, you can order it as a print via Saatchi art (worldwide shipping) or Werk aan de muur (Europe only)

click here: Saatchi art gallery (Worldwide  shipping)

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click here: Werk aan de Muur (Europe only)

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Thanks for stopping by!





This drawing is no 17 in my series of 25 digital drawings I wanted to finish in 4 weeks time, I’m taking longer to finish though. check out for more > 4 week challenge