Archive for January 17th, 2007

The Virgin Mary Crowned Van Eyck
As a very visual learner, I really do find inspiration in fine art.  As I am the one being homeschooled most days, I especially love it when there is hidden meaning in the art we study like in this Icon of The Virgin Mary.  The inscription reads:

"She is more beautiful than the sun + all the order of stars; 
being compared w/ the light she is found greater. She is in truth the reflection of everlasting light, + a spotless mirror of God"
(Wisdom 7: 29 + 26)

While I was researching some topics for our Fine Arts Friday, I found this Van Eyck painting and it spoke to me in some way.  In the Madonna’s crown are roses and lilies.  (symbolizing her love and purity).   (The funny thing is that she resembles me a bit….hmm a lesson for my heart to ponder….  I know I have much, much to learn from my most lovely patron saint.)  I wanted to know more about this painting  and came up with this from this site:

 "Perhaps the place is in front of Jan van Eyck’s crisply painted little panel that shows the Virgin Mary crowned and standing serenely inside the light-filled nave of a Gothic church.

Van Eyck casts her as a gentle giant who fills the soaring space — a remarkable invention that conflates Mary, Queen of Heaven, with the radiant interior of the church’s otherworldly architecture. The triumph of spirit over matter is paradoxically embodied.

350pxeyckhubertlamb750pix_2OK…I need to know more than that.

Then I went here and I realized this was part of something bigger….so many people may already know this, but fine arts was something passed quickly over in school.  Now I relish it for so many reasons.  It is exciting to find hidden meaning in paintings and the viewer is one like a detective looking for clues as to his own identity…as we are heirs to something much grander than ourselves.    I learned a bit more here

The thing that I argue with people about today is that we are becoming illiterite to symbol which even the illiterate to the printed word in the past knew.  I hate being "dumbed down", don’t you?  Life tastes so much sweeter with all of the seasoning added in proper proportion….we need a feast for all of the senses…a feast rich with symbolism and hints to the greater mysteries they represent…much like the parables were and are today.

I loved reading the explanation here.  I would love it if the kiddoes could create a simple penned drawing like this one, and I will invite them to do so, but I wonder if they would find it to be too complicated….and I know the pics of Adam and Eve may be a little much for a certain child I have…but I can concentrate on the more central images.  Any more ideas for a fun way to represent this information?  I am all ears!
This all came from this site and I will be perusing it in my "free time" for more ideas!  Why is it when I want to do something like this, I think of our dear Alice and I suddenly get more creative?!

About the Artist:

Jan Van Eyck

"A Flemish painter who perfected the newly developed technique of oil painting. His naturalistic panel paintings, mostly portraits and religious subjects, made extensive use of disguised religious symbols. His masterpiece is the altarpiece in the cathedral at Ghent, the Adoration of the Lamb (also called Ghent Altarpiece, 1432). Hubert van Eyck is thought by some to have been Jan’s brother." from the Encyclopedia Britanica

"The Ghent Altarpiece: The Adoration of the Lamb" (interior view) painted 1432 by Jan van Eyck.

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