Incarnation of the Moon

IMAGE OF THE WEEK

© Durga Yael Bernhard

© Durga Yael Bernhard

Incarnation of the Moon

This painting is the counterpart of last week’s image, Incarnation of the Sun.  Here is my visual embodiment of lunar energy – as feminine, earthy, and cool as last week’s image was masculine, solar, and warm.

I love exploring opposites.  Maybe it’s my long-ago studies in Jungian psychology that instilled in me an appreciation of duality.  Carl Jung drew upon the symbols of the I-Ching in his studies:  yin and yang; feminine and masculine; soothing and stimulating; receptive and aggressive; night and day.  These archetypes have fed the wellsprings of my art – and can manifest themselves as human attributes.

I associate violets with the healing energy of the moon.  There is nothing like the color violet as it occurs in nature.  Violets thrive in cool shade, and their leaves contain a slippery mucilage that cools and soothes irritated tissue.  So the woman in the painting gently gathers violet flowers and leaves to her body, offering them to those who come within her sphere.

May this image be soothing to you!

Order Incarnation of the Moon as a POSTER this week, and get a free greeting card (of the same image)!   $10 for the poster and card, shipping included.  Order your poster here!

Wishing you a good week,

seedling

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Incarnation of the Sun

IMAGE OF THE WEEK
© Durga Yael Bernhard – Do not reproduce or copy

© Durga Yael Bernhard – Do not reproduce or copy

Incarnation of the Sun

I painted this picture over twenty years ago.  I was working almost exclusively in gouache at the time, in this case on textured grey paper which shows through in the eyes and outlines of the two faces.  I was deeply immersed in African culture at the time, and fascinated by shamanic and tribal traditions from all over the world.   I was reading Joseph Campbell while involved in the very primal activity of raising two young children.  I continually sought ways to express the parent-child relationship in my art.

In addition to being breastfed, my children received a certain physical nourishment from their father that was like the energy of the sun.  I sensed the paternal energy of the sun emanating from all men; in a healthy relationship, this passes from father to child in a way that complements the endowment of moon-energy given by mothers.

These elemental energies showed up in shamanic folktales in a way that resonated with my young artist’s and mother’s mind.  I wanted to fuse influence with experience, capturing these energies in an image, as if manifesting a psycho-physical equation.  Perhaps I succeeded, as I have received numerous strong reactions to this piece over the years.

Later, I painted a counterpart titled “Incarnation of the Moon”.  I will feature that painting next week!

Order Incarnation of the Sun as a POSTER this week, and get a free greeting card (of the same image)!   $10 for the poster and card, shipping included.  Order your poster here!

Wishing you a good week, 

seedling

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Song of Sorrow, Song of Joy

Image of the Week

Happy Mother’s Day!

© Durga Yael Bernhard
© Durga Yael Bernhard

Song of Sorrow, Song of Joy

Motherhood isn’t easy under the best of circumstances.  Along with the joy comes a lot of frustration, hard work, and sometimes, sorrow.  Birth and death are inextricably connected – and sometimes, they happen together.

This image commemorates one mother’s grief following the stillborn birth of her first child.  Exactly a year later, her second child was born, alive and well – and to this day, she is considered a second child.  The two daughters were named Song of Sorrow and Song of Joy by their grandmother.  I was honored to paint this illustration of their story, in which both daughters take their place in the family’s history, and in the cycle of creation.

To all mothers who have suffered such a loss, you have all my respect.  Mothers and midwives everywhere, you have all my respect.  Children born and unborn, you are remembered and real.

Today’s our day to celebrate and be celebrated.  I just spent an hour talking to my 23-year-old daughter, my middle child – and can think of no greater pleasure than hearing her voice on this pleasant Sunday morning.  My children are unspeakable gifts.  All children come as a living blessing that is constantly renewed.  The pulse of creation continues.

Order Song of Sorrow, Song of Joy as a POSTER this week, and get a free greeting card (of the same image)!   $10 for the poster and card, shipping included.  Order your poster here!

Wishing you a good week, 

seedling

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