Wednesday, 10 September 2008

Hidden friends

Theodora, San Vitale, Ravenna

When I was a child I was given a poster of Empress Theodora. For years she stared at me from over my bed. It didn't always feel comfortable, such a weird gaze, but sometimes it made me feel good or it sent me into long daydreams. It was my mother who gave me this picture, saying very little but with much intensity. I just knew it was a precious gift.

And so this summer, we visited Ravenna and saw the original mosaics. I insisted on that. Funnily enough, everybody enjoyed the visit of the Basilica San Vitale and the mausoleum nearby. In the Basilica, I found many red, black and white tiles. An interesting website with many photos is here.

My pictures of the floor of Basilica San Vitale, Ravenna

A few moment ago, I followed a link suggested by my friend Tally and suddenly found a story of Theodora's life (longer version here). A truly wonderful lady. I'm amazed that my mother casually gave me a feminist (christian) icon with many jewels to put in the traditional place of the crucifix.

Isn't it strange how we are surrounded by hidden friends all the time ? If we manage to stop the noise inside and outside just for a moment, then we start to hear their voices...

And from a textile point of view I am amused to hear that in her time, the Blues and the Greens were fighting each other :o)


KV said...

You will never know how amazed I was to find Theodora on your blog when I arrived here tonight. Growing up in a Greek-American family, there was always at least one icon of Theodora in every immigrant household -- both my grandmothers had one.

Thanks for the memory trip I experienced tonight . . .

Kathy V in NM

Hélène H said...

Hey Kathy, yet another ressemblance between us !



Denise said...

What a beautiful picture! I find her calm. It could be just because I'm calm today. I am looking forward to seeing your BJP for 08 with the colour scheme. I too found my journal project disjointed and while I wouldn't change a thing, I am trying for a stronger theme this year.
Thanks for dropping by my blog!
Now for a picture of your workspace!!
Cheers, Denise

Hélène H said...

Thanks for your comment Denise, I really enjoyed your blog. Ok, I'll show you my workspace..