Tuesday, May 29, 2007
This is an old friend of mine, Sybil.
She is from Delphi, originally, but now resides in Rome. Rather high up in the Sistine Chapel, as it happens, quite a posh address.
I have been to visit her a few times, one time I lay on the floor to have a leisurely chat, but that was frowned upon and anyway, someone stood on me.
I own a book with her face printed in it, she is rather a famous friend and doesn't really have much time for chats. I did try and do this drawing from life, but I was compelled to instead purchase a picture and sit nearby and copy it. Which is sort of a strange concept and brings up thoughts of Walter Benjamin and "authenticity" and the aura of the original object. But I did render her , I thought, rather cautiously and carefully, reflecting my reverent attitude towards her.
So, I witnessed the authentic, the real, and produced a reproduction of a reproduction and then I gave her a lovely background of Winsor and Newton Bronze metallic gouache. To make her special and holy: Michelangelo would have been rotating in his crypt like a barbecued chook, given all those efforts he made to create volume and space and here's me giving her a very retrograde byzantine icon-style makeover.
Nonetheless, I have always loved her. Plus, being a Sybil, I was hoping she may have been forthcoming with a few portentious comments about my future, but she stayed mute on that side of things, sadly.