Friday, January 19, 2007

sketchbook: ex-voto painting

"As a child I dreamed of cats howling at the moon
heads following in the night.
The wolf stalks, breath is cold and my heart beats & beats & beats.
I prayed let this night be over, be over, be over,
but the head still follows
the wolf waits in the dark corners
there is no escape
from the demons that haunt us in the night."

Obviously this isn't what the original ex-voto that I used as inspiration for my sketchbook version said. The text is a moment in a child's life, mine.
It is acrylic and pen on paper and then coated it with kyrlon crystal glaze.
I have always had a love of ex-voto's, partly because it uses text in the paintings. I have never quite figured out how to use text in my paintings and so I find them inspiring.
Here is a link to some really beautiful ones.
History of ex-voto paintings.


Janvangogh said...

I never knew about ex votos before. They are really interesting.

Anonymous said...

I didn't know about them either jan. Thanks for sharing this with us! It is wonderful that you can express yourself this way! Keep it up! I am sure that I will keep coming to see what new paintings etc. you have made! :)

sue beyer said...

I really like this one, because of the story I think :-)

Dr.John said...

I never knew about ex-votos either. I looked at the link and they all seem to be religious in nature.

Susie Q said...

This was a new one for me and I love hearing about it. Great sketch and story. I love your ability to express yourself this way....amazing.

jafabrit said...

Hi Dr. John, yes they are very religious. I added a history link at the bottom of my post. I would describe them as visual prayers. Ex-voto is from latin meaning "from a vow". The practive dates back to ancient greece.
Hi sue, I am thinking I would like to do a painting incorporarting the text and my own images.
thanks suzie and angela, jan. I hope you enjoy exploring their history and some of the work.

Philip said...

I'd never heard of this either.Interesting - I like tseeing words in pictures ans keep meaning to give this a try myself.

BTW - How much of your sketchbook work ends up as finished paintings? What inspires you to take a work further?

Gramercy Galleria said...

wonderful! It inspires me in many ways.

Cynthia said...

I'm really interested in retablos and shrines. I had to look up ex-votos because I had never heard of them before but they seem related. Almost like a medieval book of hours. I might be wrong there.

Anywho, I'm interested to see where you're going with this.

jafabrit said...

man, you ask good questions phillip and I think it has inspired what my next post will be about. I will answer that on the next post in a few days time.

LynClay said...

This is very inspiring (wonderful sketch) and makes one want to explore new ways of expression. Thanks for sharing this and I had never heard of ex votos either but I love to learn new things...awesome!

Dr.John said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
jafabrit said...

Dr. John, I removed the comment since it is more to do with an issue with what was said on your blog than what my blog entry is.