This is the last installment in the series of 4 reviews of Epstein's "Jacob and the Angel"at Tate Britain.
My first review was a general observation, the second described the experience of different approaches to the piece and the third looked at the sculpture in the context of the surrounding work.
Today I have decided to look at the sculpture through a physiotherapists eyes (my former career).
We are told Epstein is depicting the moment Jacob's hip dislocates and he gives up his struggle with the Angel. The artist expresses Jacob's surrender in his slumped posture. Jacob's right knee is flexed and his heel is off the ground. His right leg is slightly turned out as it would be in life with such an injury.
I was drawn to the Angel's stance. He is solidly supporting Jacob, but in reality he could not. His right knee is bent with all his weight forward on his toes. Perhaps Epstein is showing him slightly off balance as he holds Jacob up. I believe, however, that he is emphasising the Angel's heavenly power. The Angel is drawn skywards and is able to support Jacob where a mere mortal would topple over and they would both fall.