In Fifty Shades Darker we find out that they are “all figurative painting, all religious-the Madonna and child, all sixteen of them.” We also find out that Christian isn’t religious and the paintings in the great room are abstracts. These paintings are not an accident.
Later in Fifty Shades Darker Christian and Ana have sex “under the patient, maternal eyes of the Madonna paintings.” Incase you’ve forgotten, this is after the elevator ride after visiting the Mile High Club.
The last time the Madonna’s are mentioned is in Fifty Shades Freed. After Ana goes out with Kate while Christian is in NY and Jack gets caught in the Apt. The following day when she arrives home, nervous about how Christian will react, she comments about the foyer, “The table is once more upright and in a new vase is in place with a gorgeous array of pale pink and white peonies. I quickly check the paintings as we wander through-the Madonnas all look to be intact.” Christian then takes Ana into the Red Room of Pain.
For those unaware of the symbolism of Madonna and child – they represent Mary (the virgin) and her son, Jesus.
The number 16 is not the most significant number in Christianity, but it certainly shows up in a lot of places. Several websites say the number 16 means love – Love never fails. The number also comes up in other places, such as the number of apostles, and the number of years it took to write the 4 gospels, and the age when Mary had Baby Jesus.
Mags, Jill and I have discussed this a bit and here are some of the theories we came up with:
They represent Christian’s love for his mother, and her love for him, even though he doesn’t recognize it.
His desire for a virginal woman (Ana) as opposed to his prostitute mother.
Christian is quietly mocking his mother, his own inside joke as people enter his apartment.
On Twitter @teacheduk8 suggested it might have to do with the number of submissives he has had.
I’m not a very religious person and I’m not looking to start and in-depth conversation about religion, but I’m not quite sure I can wrap my brain around the possibilities of this.
Where is Dr. Flynn when you need him? So, what theory do you have on this?
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