Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Pagan Poetry

A filler illustration I completed for the Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition while simultaneously working and researching paintings for my collective's upcoming gallery show. With Pagan Poetry, I was finally capable of balancing my purely decorative aesthetic with intellectual purpose. For an artist accustomed to carving layers of meaning into her pieces, this was a guilty pleasure. It is the harmonious combination of an elegant Greek goddess, a wooden helmet, owls, ancient stone, Gorgon beads and intricately braided corn rows :).

The owl, a symbol of wisdom, was the emblem of Athena/Minerva, the goddess of war or more so the lighter side of war, 'victory'. The coin design hinted at in the background was issued in Athens in 479 B.C., after the Greeks wons decisive victories against the Persians.

Now for the tentative beginnings of Sophocles' infamous tragedy Oedipus Rex. Oedipus, as you may recall, was forsaken by his parents King Laius and Queen Jocasta of Thebes, and later unwittingly murdered his father and married his mother. When his newly begotten Queen learned of his relation to her, she committed suicide. In response, Oedipus gouged out his eyes, representing the King's dark descent into ignorance and faithlessness. My interpretation falls upon a common simile for life. Life is like a boat on an unknowable, unpredictable and vast sea. Unlike a river, an ocean has no preassigned destination. If one does not set his rudder properly he suffers a thrashing to the rocks or a watery death. We cannot navigate without a plan or destination. We must empower our own destiny. The tale of Oedipus Rex spells tragedy as the consequence of attempting to outsmart the inexorable, or fate. This is the last of the images I will show you from the upcoming gallery exhibit...the finals will make their debut at the gallery show. Stay tuned!

1 comment:

  1. You just keep on improving missy!! These look great, especially love the piece you did for TOAE :D Can't wait to see your show at gallery1313!!