Sketchbook Page 24: The Pit of Libations II

November 10, 2010 § Leave a comment

The Pit of Libations II

When Odysseus sought directions home to Ithaca, he was instructed by Circe to consult the ghost of Tiresias, seer of Thebes. At ‘the Ocean River’s bounds where Cimmerian people have their homes … shrouded in mist and cloud’ he dug a pit into which he poured libations of  milk and honey, sweet wine, water, ‘glistening barley’ and the blood of a black ram. Doing so enabled him to commune with the dead – including Tiresias, the spectre of Achilles and his mother (who revealed that she had died of heartbreak brought on by his absence).

Though rarely as tragic, one could say that there is an equivalent energy poured into pit excavations, both symbolic and calorific …

These three drawings (see also The Pit of Libations I and III) are based on archaeological cross sections. There is no key to my drawings, which makes them abstract – they are a response to the strange, spatial, visual energy that we see in such diagrams when separated from their meaning …

 

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