the grandiose new Stanley Spencer: A Complete Catalogue of the Paintings by Keith Bell, published by Phaidon Press at £95.
The artist wrote of the scene, painted in oil in 1921: "The first beginning of the Crucifixion in my mind was the memory I had of some mountain dividing Bulgaria from Macedonia. I and some Berkshire Regiment men and some Cyprian Greeks were walking over the snow to the quarters, and away behind it in the dark Christmassy sky were these mountains. Somehow, though some of my worst experiences were ahead of me, I felt hopeful."
Spencer was renowned for his often eccentric interpretation of religious themes, especially the Resurrection, many inspired by his experiences as a soldier in Macedonia during the First World War.
Keith Bell's new book looks at all 500 known paintings by the artist, whose work was neglected or derided throughout much of his lifetime. Spencer was knighted shortly before he died in