Thursday, February 20, 2014

Where'd you get those eyes?

Some of the earliest artwork by humans is of animals. Bulls, mountain goats, sometimes birds of the marshes. The artmaking was tied up in huntng, yes. In fact the hunters were often depicted as well. There was an element of prophecy, though. The depictions weren't simply of animals the tribe had killed, or planned to kill. The images made a reality unto themselves.

The above picture is by Cassie Marie Edwards, and more like it can be seen here and here. It's a painting of a figurine, obviously. Meaning that it's two steps away from life: the panther wasn't real to begin with. And yet the eyes convey a feeling. Is this nostalgia for a lost way of making things? Or something else?


susan said...

Nobody will ever know for sure what the artists who painted the beautiful animals on the cave walls of Lascaux and Chauvet 30 to 40 thousand years ago thought about their subjects, but it does seem quite certain there was a spiritual connection between them. These paintings by Cassie Edwards seem to me like a longing for connection.

I don't know if you've ever seen it but Herzog's 'Cave of Forgotten Dreams' is on Vimeo. It's very beautiful.

Ben said...

One thing that's interesting about early sirituality like that is that it wasn't necessarily based on abstracts. These were things they saw, on an overwhelming basis.

See what you mean about longing for connection. These eyes have the ghost of a twinkle in them.

I'm working my way through "Cave of Forgotten Dreams". The scenes are beautiful, and Herzog is a great narrator.