I sometimes have a beef with religious art because of the assumptions that the artist must make about the scriptures in order to complete her/his work.
This is an interesting corrective. I have a poster-size version of it, framed, and I like it.
Focusing on the Gospel of Mark, here is some evidence that women were, in fact, present at the Last Supper:
(1) It was Jewish tradition for women to take part in Passover. To break from that tradition, in itself, would have been worthy of mention. Since in all recorded cases, Jesus is as open to women’s participation (if not more so) than his surrounding culture, it would have been doubly worthy of mention if his celebration of Passover excluded women.
(2) Compare Mark 14:28 with Mark 16:7. It makes the most sense to see these verses as referring to the same event instead of hypothesizing a second, unmentioned event.
(3) Referring to “one of the twelve” in 14:20 suggests that there were others present (see also 14:16 and 17).
(4) See 15:41. Women came up with Jesus to Jerusalem. Why did he go to Jerusalem? To celebrate Passover.
(5) While ancient and modern practices are not always parallel, I do note that, of course, women participate in the sacrament now.
(6) As my not-particularly-religious mother scoffed when I explained all of this to her the first time she saw Bohdan’s painting in my house, “(scoff) Of course. Who would have done the cooking, anyway?” (Not that I approve of that reason.)
There is a larger point here. We should be very careful with how we allow religious art to affect our reading of the scriptures. (One Institute student pointed out to me that in Bohdan’s painting, the floor appears to be made of huge stones. Not an easy trick for an ‘upper room.’) And we should not assume women are absent because their presence isn’t specifically mentioned.