After seeing Frederic Church’s “Heart of the Andes” painting years ago at The Met in NYC, I was inspired to try to create my own sort of secular altarpiece, one intended as place to worship Nature. It takes some cues from early Renaissance triptychs and altarpieces, but stays in line with my previous work in terms of style and content.

I painted the panels here in my studio in Seattle. but also worked with a woodcarver in Thailand for the highly-detailed frames. And I worked with Metalphysic foundry in Tucson to help create the bronze elements, including the three “Keeper” animals, each of which contain/protect a different grouping of species inside their glass heads. Each frame also has a bronze ‘crown’ and a bronze relief panel on the base.

Before shipping off to its eventual home in Europe, the triptych will be part of the “Suggestivism: Resonance” exhibition at Spoke Art in New York City, running July 7 to July 28.

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The Sanctuary

The Sanctuary – In its ‘closed’ position

Detail – bronze relief

Detail – frame carving

Detail – Bronze ‘crown’

Detail – bronze

The Keeper – bronze

Center Panel

The Sanctuary

7.5-feet tall x 12-feet wide.

Oil on Panel, Wood, Bronze and Glass


Scott Musgrove