DescriptionPaul von Klieben "Jesus - The Transfiguration" Chapel Painting (1941).
The "Little Chapel by the Lake" was built in 1941 to house one of Paul von Klieben's most extraordinary paintings: a fluorescent portrait of Jesus Christ on heavy glass, called "The Transfiguration". Upon entering the chapel, visitors took a seat and heard a description of what Christ may have looked like. As the narration progressed, the altar doors containing the painting were opened and a black light shining upon the painting made it appear as if Christ's eyes were opening. This painting made its debut in the Adobe Church eight days after Pearl Harbor was attacked. Russell Knott is quoted in the book Knott's Revisited as saying "It was rather spectacular... to hear music and narration and see the doors open. It was very dramatic for the time to see the Christ painting and see his eyes open. That part was always very hushed." von Klieben's painting was based on an apocryphal description from the writings of Publius Lentulus in 32 AD. The effect was accomplished by using focused lighting that would gradually transition from incandescent to fluorescent and then, magically, Christ's eyes would appear to open. This historic painting of "The Transfiguration" is on heavy glass measuring 65" x 110", with Jesus measuring 82" tall! The lot is accompanied by the original Transfiguration Doors that swung open to reveal the painting. The two doors are very heavy and measure 110" x 72". This piece of Knott's Berry Farm history is more than 75 years old, and one of the most important lots in this auction. Please note: The paint is dry and flaking on the glass. Minor handling, surface wear, and flaking of the original paint; Very Good overall condition.
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