Friday, 14 August 2009
A Story in a Box
I really hope you decide to have a go at this months challenge ...... you are such a talented gang; this could prove to be VERY interesting!
We would like you to tell us a story in a box. It could be one made up by you .... or you could do what I've done and use a ready-made story.
You could use any kind of box/container and materials. My box is 4" x 4".
You may already know that I have a passion for Pre-Raphaelite paintings and so decided to choose one of my favourites as a basis for a story. The painting is 'Pia De' Tolomei' by Rossetti. (The model was William Morris's wife Jane - who Rossetti was in love with at the time.)
The story originates from Dante Alighieri's 'The Divine Comedy' in which he descrives his journey through Hell, Purgatory and Paradise - see here for more info. In the 'Purgatory' section Dante describes his meeting with Pia de' Tolomei who had been imprisoned in a fortress in Maremma (Tuscany). Its a very sad story!
Ghino has fallen in love with Pia, wife of his cousin Nello. When she refuses his love, in revenge Ghino informs Nello that he has discovered a secret message proving that Pia is having an adulterous relationship. This is untrue but Nello imprisons his wife and leaves her to die.
In the painting Pia is toying with her wedding ring...once a joy and now a mockery. She is surrounded by ivy - representative of clinging memory. A rosary rests on a book of prayers beneath which can be seen old love letters from her husband.
Pia has a very sad and wistful expression.
I have tried to use these symbols in my work. The outside of the box is covered in torn text representing the love letters. I used a smaller box lid inside and cut the picture to raise the area where her head is. I found a rosary in my treasure box and used an old bronze brooch at the top.