Monday, June 22, 2009

Medieval Image of the Day

It is not medieval, post medieval perhaps, but I didn't want to mis-lead those that come just to see the pictures. :) Hope you enjoy it. Feel free to leave a comment and click the image to see it larger (It is really worth it!).

Velazquez 1657, This is such a fabulous painting. There is so very much going on! It is all about Arachne. In the background Arachne and Athena are duking it out... Arachne loses in case you are wondering. ;) In the foreground is the spinner and weaver of the thread needed by both Athena and Arachne. I love that the spinner's knee is showing! How many of us have a barefoot or bared knee when spinning? Next to her is a lovely woman winding yarn from a swift into a ball.

Now it could simply be a spectacle put on about Athena and Arachne, but it is all incidental to what is going on. What does the woman by the curtain have to say to the spinner and what does the woman toting the basket say to the ball winding woman? What does the artist want us to know? There is the lesson of arrogance that we learn from Arachne and respect from Athena. There is the toil and labor of the spinster and others that exists and there is the everyday quality that we see in the background of the grandeur of an incredible tapestry and the presence of a Goddess. The normality and rhythm of everyday life and everyday tasks is perhaps what is valuable not the opulence and attention of the apparently grand.

I am quite busy over extending myself. I am sewing and helping co-ordinate a local musical for youth of The Pirates of Penzance. It is totally delightful, happy, energizing, but I am sewing at all hours and days. I must be done by Thursday morning at the latest and preferably by Wens. evening at 5pm. Tonight however I am going to sleep as I was up to 3am last night. Good night all and sweet dreams! May your spinning turn well.

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