Tommie Smith as St Thomas Aquinas

It was the olympics and an article/interview about/with a famous olympian, Tommie Smith, showed the 'iconic' fist in the air photo.
Now, I have always had a soft spot for this photo which ticks many boxes for me. As I was at time pondering about propaganda images and how one reads them, versus the contemporary 'iconising' of celebrities, the Tommie Smith interview came at the just the right time.
There are more than one St Thomas and as I already had planned to use a friend for Thomas the Apostle, Tommie Smith made sense. Apparently, Thomas Aquinas was nicknamed 'the ox' as he was believed to be stupid because of his physique. He was also one of the sharpest thinker and his intellectual legacy lives on.
When I started on the icon, I double checked by phone, when was Tommie Smith born. I was told the 5th which is St Boniface's day, represented by holly bushes. By the time I cottoned on that Tommie Smith was born on the 6th (St Thomas day obviously), my holly was in place and amused me so much that I decided to keep it. Nonetheless I added lilies and the sun as both are symbols of Thomas Aquinas.

Again this is oil on gesso and small, about 6 x 4 inches



Shown at the Crocus Gallery Open in 2012