Julie Swan 2014
ceramic/copper/gold/iron oxide patina
h.50cm x w.62cm x d.26cm
This work references my appreciation of a beautiful musical performance. In this third work I continue to explore the wonderful countertenor voice of Jeff Buckley in his interpretation of 'Dido's Lament'
The challenge has been to listen to the music and then transfer it to a three dimensional form. The descending scale repeats itself wonderfully. I have expressed this in the line of the figure. The base spirals up and out towards her lover...then releases and steps back down to form a continuing circle.
The text, and the Purcell opera are alluding to the Roman legend of the Aeneid, the story of a Trojan Warrior Aeneas, seeking Italy in order to settle there and secure his son's lineage. Aeneas is blown off course from Sicily, and lands on the shores of Northern Africa, in Carthage, a recently settled city of former Tyrians. Their queen is Dido, with whom Aeneas has a love affair, before departing for Italy and leaving Dido alone. She becomes so distraught that she orders for a large pyre to be placed, on which she plans to impale herself, and be set ablaze so that Aeneas will see from his ship. This is perhaps the most poignant part of the legend, and ends at the culmination of Book IV.
Thy hand, Belinda, darkness shades me
More I would, but Death invades me;
Death is now a welcome guest.
On thy bosom let me rest
When I am laid, am laid in earth, May my wrongs create
No trouble, no trouble in thy breast;
Remember me, remember me, but ah! forget my fate.
Remember me, but ah! forget my fate.