02 July, 2011

The Fiery Ascension Of the Prophet Elijah (Decoded)

Below is image of a painting I created known as "The Fiery Ascension of the Prophet Elijah" modeled after the Christian Orthodox glass paintings of the Circle of Savu Moga (Romania) during the late 19th century.  The Prophet Elijah, is one of the most revered patron saints of work amongst Orthodox Romanians.
He is believed to protect crops from conflagration, drought and general catastrophe. The Prophet is mostly depicted during his Fiery Ascension, indicating his mastery and domination of fire. Elijah rides a regal chariot of fire,  lead by powerful horses of fire. Below is my recreation of the prophet, in process. Here, I wanted to make general depiction of the event as a template, made out of piety and devotion for the basis of later disturbing or rearranging that very harmony and beauty of the piece.          

Below is the re-imagining, or deconstruction of the Prophet Elijah. Here, new and personal ideals are introduced to the visual narrative. Adding too, or in many ways changing the narrative completely. Elijah is taken in as myself, and depicted holding a fiery sword of ignorance, powered by logic. Jesus is replaced by animal, the sky is littered with eyes, the fiery horses not only pursue the heavens but also the philosophers stone. Above, the eye of god still looms with respect to universal consciousness. Above the all seeing eye, the major arcana number 7 appears, indicating the spiritual guidance and presence of The Chariot card. On the ground, what would be Elijah's pupil Elisha is now a veiled figure implicating the absence or denial of a pupil, or in some respects symbolizing that the pupil is in fact also the teacher. That although the heavens or Elijah's path to enlightenment, may have separated the two in one form, they are also brought closer together by this in realizing their commonality in the universe.       

"The Fiery Ascension.." - Gabaret Salgian

 Early Christian painting of the Virgin Mother and child. Most likely influenced by even earlier works by Ethiopian artists, who traded their goods among neighboring communities and settlements. Goods like the one below. 

Madonna wood icon, made in Ethiopia, the oldest continuous christian state, tracing its history back as far as 4th century A.D.

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