clip_image001Hugh Farey writes:

Hi Dan,

You’re so good at picking up references to the Shroud that I was thrilled to find this before you published it yourself, in the latest copy of Skeptical Inquirer – a letter from an artist called Robert A. Richert, of

I am a professional artist who has studied human anatomy and painted several portraits. I do not believe that the face of Jesus on the Shroud of Turin is an anatomically accurate depiction of a real person. Several years ago, I met and spoke with Joe Nickelll. Joe is an artist and sceptical investigator who has studied the Shroud of Turin extensively, wrote a book on the subject and appeared on numerous television programmes.

I told Joe that to me the image of Jesus’s head on the cloth resembles a common medieval to early Renaissance stylised depiction of a person. Jesus’s face appears too large for the surrounding size of the head, and his eyes are located too high. In addition to making faces too large, amateur artists tend to place the eyes about 2/3 to 3/4 up from the base of the chin to the top of the head. Human eyes are actually located close to the middle of the head. Check this out for yourself the next time you look in the mirror! These common amateur and medieval artists’ characterizations are based upon idealistic perceptions, not upon an attempt toward anatomical accuracy or realism.

Also, a popular artistic stylisation in the Middle Ages to early Renaissance was the exaggeration of long, thin, European noses. Observe the similarity of mediaeval paintings to that of the face on the shroud: long thin noses, disproportionately large faces compared to head size, and eyes placed high on their heads. These similarities clearly show that the face of Jesus on the shroud more closely resembles the stylised and anatomically inaccurate faces of mediaeval paintings than that of a real person.

My observations are consistent with the hypothesis that the Shroud of Turin is the work of a medieval artist.

There is no link. This is from the latest issue that is not yet online.