painting of the Madonna and Child was influenced by a Flemish
painting, an Italian plate, a violinist in a red dress ... and
by a sense of tenderness and awe in contemplating Christ's incarnation.
Mary is aware that her tiny son will be the savior of the world,
and that there will be great pain and sacrifice ahead. But that
does not diminish her delight in him. He is her greatest joy,
and yet with her open hand she willingly gives him to the world.
God's greatest gift is given, and he opens his arms to the world.