A Note on Landscapes for Meditation
During the Middle Ages, people strengthened their spiritual lives through private contemplation of small devotional paintings made specifically for this purpose. These were placed in their bedchambers or in other corners of their homes. During this early period, the images were largely portraits of spiritual figures or depictions of religious events, and their purpose was to evoke an emotional response and to encourage the viewer to form a personal meditative relationship with the image. It is in this spirit that I offer these small landscapes for meditation, whatever one’s religious beliefs may be. Each one is mounted in a small refurbished frame in order to enhance the particular quality of the miniature landscape. To my mind, these watercolors evoke presence and absence, fullness and emptiness—both often a part of any quest. They also strive to expand the idea of what is sacred and to encourage the making of a place and a time for private contemplation in our lives.
(I am indebted to the Department of Medieval Art and The Cloisters, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, for information on early devotional paintings.)
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