Only one week left to see the show at Tiny Town gallery. Thirteen thankyous to all who have bought my work. It means so much to me. If you haven't made it down to see it you have a few days left.Or you can buy them online here.
I have heard a rumor that people like to hear the story of the behind the scenes of the creative process. So…here is some backstory to go with my painting “Vesta Tending The Hearth Flame.”
The inspiration for this painting came as a series I did when I was teaching a class on the astrology of the asteroid goddesses. These paintings were part of my prep work for my class. Art is a big part of my understanding of a subject for my dyslexic mind.
The asteroid goddesses were discovered at the end of the 1800s. Their discovery corresponds with the women's movement. The naming of these newly discovered asteroids for the Roman Goddesses helped to balance the male-dominated naming of the solar system.
Vesta, or Hestia, was Zeus's elder sister who never married. In mythology, she became the protectress of the hearth and the sacred altar flame. The archetypal Temple Priestess, Vesta is a virgin in the original sense of being whole and complete in oneself. In the system of goddess symbols, she represents the principle of spiritual focus and of devotion to following one's calling. The fertile sexual energy of Venus is used by Ceres to birth children of the body, by Pallas to birth children of the mind, by Juno to build relationships with others, and by Vesta to deepen a relationship with the Self or with the Divine.
Vesta symbolizing the energy of the hearth flame symbolizes the primal need for home.
As I connected to this idea it was very clear that the energy of Vesta began long before the Roman Empire. So I chose to paint her in the Lascaux caves in France. Showing her as an original ancestor. As I was exploring the cave paintings and trying to emulate them in my painting it was very clear how skilled these prehistoric artists were. The grace and curves of the bull are so lovely. I greatly enjoyed studying these OG masters. This portrait of Vesta is my interpretation of the primal energy of home that we all need in our lives in order to thrive.
The astrological energy of Vesta invites us to understand the fire at the center of the home that can transform and transmute the pain of the world. She teaches how to tend that fire so that no one can take it away from you.
Understanding Vesta's placement in your chart will help you understand how to honor and tend the hearth within your heart.
Around 10 years ago I was called to work with healing the earths pathways of light or ley lines as they are sometimes called. the first site I was called to work on was the rock quarry at A mountain. I remember how big it felt as I walked around it doing the work of repairing the broken line. Following guidance every step because I truly had no idea what I was doing. when the repair was complete I remember thinking oh it is just plumbing. I will be Pachamama's plumber. over the next few years I was called to bigger and bigger mines. The Portland cement mine, then the Duval Mine, then the mines down in Bisbee. I looked straight in the face of the epic stupidity of humanity as well as my own evolvement. How the zipper on my pants and the wires in the fan that keeps me cool all come from the earth. I had to sit with my judgment and my desire to be innocent. I went into deep depression that I wasn't sure I could pull out of.
During this time I went to the Gem show with my son who was 12 at the time. As we were parking he starts telling me all about this mining technique that involves blasting the side of the mountain until all the goodies just fall out. He clearly thought this was such a great idea. My immediate reaction was " Ye gods that is terrible! what are they thinking just ripping open the earth like that!" My sweet son looks at me and askes the ultimate question. "Then how do we do it right?"
The truth is as a society we love our technology. whatever the cost. Me included. So how do we do it right?
I have sat with this question a good long time. I am still not sure but I do know a few things.
Working with natures intelligence and specifically asking permission would go a long way. If there is a right way Nature would be able to tell us how to do it. In my experience of earth healing. nature is not nostalgic or unwilling to change the way we humans are. If we worked co creatively with nature on the question it would be the most efficient and sustainable mining operation on the planet. It would require that we take no for an answer. I guess the question become is consensual mining a possibility.
Josephine Thomason is an artist, healer, teacher.