Thursday, May 10, 2012

Painting at last!

There comes a time in life when a person had to do what she or he has to do. For me, this is painting.  I have wanted to paint since I was in high school....more than 30 years ago.

This painting shows the city of Derbent in the Caucasus.  It is after an engraving of the city in the Yule-Cordier Marco Polo (Dover Edition).  The calpih Harun al-Rashid, ruler of most of the civilized world, visited this strategic place, standing at the frontier of his vast realm.

The city lies open to the sea.  The rolling hills are the body of the earth.  The one who has arrived, the so-called great one, is a small but important figure heading into the midst of the city.  he has past the entrance and proceeds into the depths of this ancient place.

The jetty and the boat linger at the entrance, but the caliph reaches the interior.  His presence will cause a chain reaction, the will engender new life into this once forgotten town.

Overhead, far from the concerns of men, two birds float serenely over the whole scene, oblivious to the concerns of humans.

"Auch euer denkin wir, ihr Thale des Kaukasos,
So alt ihr seid, ihr Paradiese dort
Und deiner Patriarchen und deiner Propheten"

                                     ~Am Quell der Donau, Friedrich Holderlin

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