The Miraculous Draught of Fish

Glastra, Siebe Wiemer

Glastra depicts his own interpretation of the Biblical story: Saint Peter and other disciples of Christ pull their teeming nets of fish aboard a boat. After an unsuccessful night of fishing on the Sea of Tiberius, the tired and hungry disciples had seen a man standing on the shore and followed his advice to cast their nets over the boat’s right side. Their miraculous catch inspired Peter to recognize Christ, appearing after his death and resurrection.

Central in the symmetric image lies a sailing boat, parallel to the surface of the image. The apostles stand at the railing around the perfectly vertical mast, in three small groups. A large net full of fish is being hauled on board at the bottom left. At the bottom right on a narrow strip of land stands Jesus, the man wearing a white robe and red cloak, with his outstretched hand making the gesture of a speech, a large yellow-gold halo around his head and shoulders. The water of the lake in the foreground has erratic white stripes, depicting the foam of the breaking waves. Glastra succeeded in portraying the sizzling excitement of the moment: the V-shapes above the waves depict the cloudy sky, the yellow, red and orange smudges and smears are the refracted light on the surrounding mountains, reflections on the water and flashes of lightning.