Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween

In the spirit of if you can't beat them, join them, I give you my own Halloween Female Super Hero: St. Martha, the Patron Saint of Housewives (1993, oil on canvas, 1370 x 510, collection: the artist).

Centuries before Buffy, there was St. Martha, who was responsible for slaying a bloodthirsty dragon (AKA the Tarasque) that was laying waste to the countryside of Tarascon, an ancient town on the Rhône, situated between Avignon and Arles. According to legend, St. Martha succeeded in capturing and taming the dragon, which the townspeople subsequently destroyed. For more about St. Martha and the Tarasque, click HERE.

The work was made in 1993 as part of a three-month Australia Council Residency at the Cite Internationale des Arts in Paris. Its key point of departure was the superb painting, St. Michael by Piero della Francesca (1469). Originally a side panel of an altarpiece, it is now one of the gems of the Sainsbury Wing of London's National Gallery. You can view it HERE.