Hans Feibusch Mural
All Hallows Church houses a valuable work of art: a mural by the renowned artist Hans Feibusch. 'Noli me Tangere’ depicts Jesus appearing before Mary Magdalene after his resurrection.
All Hallows' links with World War Two are further strengthened by the personal history of the artist himself. Hans Feibusch fled Germany in the 1930s to escape the Nazi regime. He was one of Hitler's so-called 'degenerate artists', exhibited by them at a show in 1937 to highlight modernist art trends the regime opposed. Feibusch was, in fact, a conservative painter, but was probably included in that exhibition because he was Jewish.
The mural has been bricked up for decades. Southwark Cathedral intends to move it to a wall in the worship space in their proposed new development. At best, Feibusch would hardly have approved as all his works were site-specific i.e. he would have designed the All Hallows mural specifically for the wall it is on. When Chichester Cathedral wanted him to move a mural around the corner from where it was originally supposed to be, he designed a completely new work, believing the old design would not have been seen at its best in a new location.
Most of the people involved in the current campaign to save All Hallows have never seen the mural. But thanks to Joanna Cheetham from the Courtauld Institute of Art, who got in touch with the campaign offering help when she saw the notices on the garden gates, images of the mural have been tracked down.
'Noli me Tangere' is translated as ‘don’t touch me’ but could also be interpreted as ‘don’t hold on to me’, an appeal from Jesus to Mary Magdalene, distraught at his death, to let him go. Images of mural can be seen in the pictures’ section of this website.
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