Belief in the existence of unseen beings, having the power both to help and harm us, permeates all religions past and present. That of the early Greeks was no exception; fear of the unknown was intrinsic to their beliefs. With genius, these ancient peoples conjured up a constellation of gods whose members, though superhuman, were yet all too human in their distinct personalities, attributes, and life histories. This attributed humanity made it easy for the Greeks to relate to and to identify with their gods and goddesses.
From this mythology, so created, we inherited a cast of character as disparate and powerful as Zeus, Apollo, and Artemis. They have been, throughout history, subject matter for image-makers working in different media. The lovelife of the earthy, peripatetic Zeus, who could change his form at will; the forlorn Apollo, struck by Cupid’s arrow, but thwarted in his quest for Daphne; Mistress of the Wild Animals Artemis, to whom the stag was sacred, are themes found in the works of Titian, Tiepolo, Rembrandt, and Bernini, to name just a few.
The Armchair Mythology series is my playful, but reverent, rendering of these epic Olympians. In order to bridge the distance of time and culture, I have chosen to use the metaphor of a twentieth-century armchair. The chair embraces my dual role as respectful observer of these ancient myths, as well as contemplative artist seeking inspiration as how best to represent them in my own personal art form.