Violence

(Original artwork by FBC, Omnia Caelum Studios Valencia, All Rights Reserved)

It starts off in the darkness

and fills everything with fear,

and the nothingness within

is built on pain and tears…

Darkness is the spear

that penetrates your skin with utmost silence…

We wonder, when and where, we’ll finally subdue the kindness in our heart and lash out fiercely from the start

to either feel the pain

or feel the rain

upon our skin…

I don’t want to know what you think of as

Violence…

And you don’t want to know what’s deep inside my heart…

C.2020, Francisco Bravo Cabrera, Valencia, Spain 🇪🇸

What’s Going On…

USA riots following the death of George Floyd, May 31
(New York City protests)

I would like to apologise to all my followers because I have made the decision that today I will post a special post reference the sad, tragic, incredible situation going on in the United States. I will follow through with the Picasso series tomorrow, Monday, June 1, 2020. So tomorrow it will be “Picasso y Dora Maar”.

Today I am very saddened and concerned with the situation throughout the U.S. First because of the death of Mr. George Floyd. Second because of the attitude of some police officers, like Derek Chauvin who show no regard for human life. The police are not there to murder people. An enforcer is not a judge and cannot decide life or death. An officer is only authorised to use deadly force to protect his life or the life of others…

Riots, violence, disturbances in the cities is not the answer. Violence begets further violence. No one has the right to inflict harm on others. If we are outraged…and we should…by the actions of this rogue cop, we should be outraged by the violence perpetrated across twenty five cities in the United States by “protesters”. Showing your disgust, your anger and your desire for change does not allow you to hurt others or to destroy private property.

I lived in the US for many years. I served in the US military, I was a deputy sheriff in a large metropolitan area. I never had to exert deadly force. I never abused anyone. I took my job seriously and I did not extend the bounds of my authority and became an abuser. There is no reason to disrespect others. In the US a “criminal” is innocent until proven guilty and condemned by a jury of his peers. The police have no right to punish.

Protesters have every right to protest. They’ve no right to take the protest too far, to extend it to where it becomes revenge. And misguided revenge because white people are not necessarily to blame because a white poiceman kills a black man. We are all victims when it comes to police induced violence, when it comes to being disrespected by a law enforcement officer.

One thing that I must say is that I saw that when a child is born in the US, if her parents are from Argentina, Cuba, Bolivia or any other country in Central or South American, that child is termed “Hispanic”. That I could never and still do not comprehend. Why is that child simply not an “American”? Why are black people called “African-Americans”, why are Mexicans (born in the US) called “Latinos”? Why isn’t everybody born in the US an “American”. Why do “they” divide people and then look for unity? Who decides who is “white”?

This is the key, I believe, to solving the racial, ethnic and social problems that plague the United States. In my country when a child is born they are only one thing, a Spaniard. You still retain your cultural background, say if you are from Galicia, Catalunya, Euskadi or Andalucia, but you are a Spaniard and no one, nowhere will ever ask you what race do you claim as your own. It does not matter if your parents were Moroccans, Africans, Russians, Chinese or North Americans…

I hope that these horrible riots and protests end soon and that peace can be found again in that country and that the ones that set policy there realise that by catgegorising people by their race or ethnic group is an error that can lead to disaster.

Peace…I leave you with this great song by an American who really understood unrest, bigotry, racism and the sorrows of being from a country that does not accept you…

Please let me know what you think about all this…let’s talk about it…

THANKS!

Saturdays Artist Series: Five Ancient Greek Women Artists

Were there women artists in ancient Greece? Well, Pliny the Elder, in his “Natural History” mentions these Timarete, Eirene, Calypso, Aristarete, Iaia, Olympias. Later we find them mentioned as well in Boccaccio’s “De mulieribus claris”.

I am not sure of these are the same women, with different names (as their names are translated and transcribed through the ages) or if some are the same and not others. However, I think that is not important, the important thing for me is that these women were never mentioned. Even today, they are hardly mentioned and you must look for them to find out about them. But I think they should be known because they represent important firsts in Art History.

  1. Tamaris (Tamareta)
  2. Anaxandra
  3. Eirene
  4. Kora of Sicyon
  5. Alcisthene
  6. Iaia of Cyzicus

Τιμαρέτη, also known as Thamyris, Tamaris or Thamar. She lived in the 5th century BC in Athens. She is described by Pliny the Elder as a woman who followed her father’s art. She is well known for painting the goddess Diana. The painting was kept in Ephesus (where there was much love and devotion for Diana) for many years. It no longer exists…

Here is a painting by an unknown medieval artist that could depict Tamaris painting the goddess Diana:

(Tamaris)

Ἀναξάνδρα, Anaxandra. Her father was Nealkes, famous for painting a portrait of Aphrodite. She worked circa 228 B.C. She is mentioned by Clement of Alexandria, the 2nd century Christian theologian.

Since there are no images of Anaxandra, I am choosing this generic drawing to symbolise her:

what did the ancient greek women wear | Grecian lady. Shawls were ...
(possible representation of Anaxandra)

Ειρήνη, Irene or Eirene. She was described by Pliny the Elder in the 1st century. Again she was the daughter of a painter. Boccaccio, the Italian poet and humanist (who also wrote “Decameron”), included her in his work “De mulieribus claris” (“On Famous Women”). It is thought that he might have attributed more paintings to Irene than those she actually painted…

This is the illustration of Eirene in “De Mulieribus Claris”:

File:Eirene - De mulieribus claris (BNF Fr. 598, fol. 92r).jpg

Κόρα, Kora of Sicyon. Perhaps she is the first female artist. At least the first that there is evidence of. It is believed that she was born sometime between 700 BC and 601 BC in Sicyonia. Her father was Dibutades of Sicyon, again, an artist, a potter and sculptor. Kora was beautiful and always wore a veil…her father benefited from the suitors that came to his studio and became quite a famous painter.

Kora painted a portrait of her lover and her father made of the portrait the first relief sculpture. It was kept for over two hundred years in the Greek city of Corinth. Both Kora and her father are mentioned by Pliny the Elder in his “Natural History”.

Again, as there are no paintings of Kora, I will substitute a generic representation of a Greek woman of her time:

Women in Ancient Greece - Ancient History Encyclopedia
(could have been Kora)

Αλκισθένη, Alcisthene or Akkisthene. Well, she certainly must have been obscure, but she is mentioned by Pliny the Elder as women painters of note.

And since I was unable to really find anything interesting about Alcisthene, you can understand that a painting of her would be impossible to find, so i will simply put this generic image representing an ancient Greek woman:

Role of Women in Ancient Greece
(could have been Alcisthene)

Iaia of Cyzicus. Unknown birth date but she is thought of being alive between 116-27 BC.

Iaia was born in Cyzicus. She relocated to Rome to further develop her art, which included sculpture as well as painting. Iaia was considered a portrait painter exclusive…it is believed…of women. Because Pliny attributes to her a self-portrait, it is thought of being the first self-portrait by a female artist.

Iaia is mentioned by Boccaccio in his “De mulieribus claris”. Her name written as Lalla is one of the names that Judy Chicago featured on her “Heritage Floor” which is a list of 998 women, whether mythical or historical, but worthy of recognition and displayed on handmade white tiles that form part of Judy Chicago’s “The Dinner Party” (1979). The exhibition has been, since 2007, in the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art at the Brooklyn Museum, New York.

A painting of…possibly…Iaia from a French translation of De mulieribus claris” from the 15th Century.

My conclusion is that the idea that history has engraved into our heads and into our consciousness of antiquity being fully dominated by a paternal society, may not be accurate. I really believe that women played very important parts within the city states of Athens, Sparta, Ephesus and others. These women were not censured, shunned, or punished in any way…that we have been able to discover…and were recognised for their artistic talent. The fact that their names remain to this day is proof of that.

I hope you have liked this Saturdays Artists post. If you did, please hit that like button, re-blog and comment. We need to talk about art. Let us start the conversation going and continue it. Art History needs to be re-written. Artists that until now are held in esteem should be looked at again. Perhaps some of those that are cluttering up museums should be replaced by many, especially women artists, that have been ignored and which are much better. Let me hear from you…

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