From the Diocese of Trevisto and Aleteia:
The artist, Jean-Léon Gérôme, knew the Holy Land well and decided to depict Christ’s death in a place that feels unnaturally wild and remote. Far in the distance is the city of Jerusalem. In the foreground is the stony ground of desolation. The weather matches the mood, with clouds of gloom as “darkness fell over the whole land until the ninth hour” (Luke 23:44-46).