Jesus welcomes all to Annie's art sale
AND lo, it was written that Jesus would go forth and become reggae star Bob Marley and a cyclist in the Tour de France.
Well, that is what has been happening to a Jesus statue in Annie Taylor's front bay window over the past year. It is now wearing antlers as part of an open house Christmas handicrafts sale this Sunday.
Miss Taylor said: "It started a year ago as a tongue-in-cheek comment on an antisocial neighbour.
"Jesus appeared in the window with a 'love thy neighbour' slogan attached.
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"Gradually he started doing things. He had a Christmas party then tried to give up smoking as a new year's resolution.
"A week later he was smoking again."
The statue has been in the family for decades after Miss Taylor's brother salvaged it from a skip.
Two years ago Miss Taylor offered to mend its broken hand and it has been with her ever since.
She said: "I'm not religious, but it seemed wrong to simply throw it away."
She accepts requests. A cyclist friend suggested she give the statue a cap and enter him in the Tour de France.
Miss Taylor said: "People really do seem to enjoy him. We've had tweets and Facebook messages. At Easter I took him out of the window and left a sign in the window saying 'back in three days'.
"When he went back to school I had him holding a maths book with a note from the teacher saying 'five loaves + two fishes > 5,000 – please see me'."
Miss Taylor usually paints upbeat seaside illustrations in watercolour or acrylic and creates layered work using glass and pinhole cameras.
Joining her for Sunday's sale will be fellow artist Janet Dance, who does textured, layered work; Alison Lee, who is known for her portraits of people and chairs; and abstract artist and award-winning chocolate-maker Katrina Taylor.
Miss Taylor said: "The items hanging on Jesus's antlers are all for sale,"
The sale will run from 11am to 4pm at 52 Regent Street with mulled wine available.
Is this a good use of a statue destined for the dump? Or is it offensive? Let us know at newsdesk.times@KRNmedia.co.uk or write to us at the address on page 2.