Its all well and good to have one of those great light bulb moments, curtousey of the Muse of course but it’s another thing to do something with it. So here I was all excited about the prospect of this new series of works, where would they lead and what would they tell, but where to start. Obviously one has to revisit all the religious iconography of the past and come to grips with some of the paths previously explored.
In the case of this particular work, the Annunciation, there are many fine examples. However I wasnt exploring an overtly christian paradigm. This was to be something much more personal in nature. On reflection though, I didnt see any harm in using some of the ideas and themes used by generations of other artists. They are well known and could be easily comprehended by a viewer of the work. The trick I felt was to explore my feelings about them and in the process weave my own beliefs into the work. Beliefs that may even change as the series progresses and I try to question myself in depth. I fear some will be quite illusive when push comes to shove.
So, the Anunnciation, a good place to start. Bring forth my new prophet.
First belief to be scrutinised. Do I believe in the immaculate conception ? No, I don’t think so. Now thats not the same as do I believe a man called Jesus walked the Middle East. Thats another question entirely and will take some consideration. ( I recall here a quote from a devout christian friend from many years past who once said to me, “keep thinking and questioning, assume nothing and remember Jesus was just a working class man” )
Ok, so no immaculate conception but who’s to say a woman wasn’t forwarned about her child. Call it what you want, intuition, premonition, a dream. I mean a person who thinks he got this whole idea from the Muse, a voice or subconscience messenger from the other has no right to argue that one. A simple setting then, quiet, evening perhaps. A time when one would usually reflect or be open to suggestions from the other, intimate. An angel or messenger for obvious reasons keys the painting but with subdued radiance. The room is sparse, these are simple people. Wonderful things do and should happen to the humble. I laugh heartily to myself on reflection. Is that winged being from the other letting that painted minx know she’s actually having my child. Maybe there is a pretence for the immaculate conception after all. Now I have to wait for this new prophet of mine to be born.
Bring on a new canvas and hot towels please.